14 seconds…that’s what I’ve been averaging per day over the past six months (I track it).
First of all, not sure whether this is irrational or not, but it really irritates me when I see people giving advice about how to get started with mindfulness. ‘Yeah man, just do 10 minutes a day!’ Sure, and while I’m at it why don’t I ‘just run a marathon!’
For people like me, it’s just not realistic – especially when getting started. Not because I don’t think it’s important (I’m well aware of the academic literature backing the benefits of mindfulness practice), and not because I lack reminders.
Having reminders isn’t really that helpful for me – I reflexively come up with some excuse about how I don’t need mindfulness at that moment, or I’ll get to it later.
Also, my brain feels like it’s ‘wasting time’ and needs to get back to working on my backlog of worries/problems. All the while with me knowing full well how that’s flawed thinking.
What I’ve been trying lately is to reaffirm my commitment to mental growth, and making myself more forcefully sensitive to any cues/reminders that I should be doing mindfulness. Then, I’ve made made it less up for debate about whether or not I should drop what I’m doing ASAP and do mindfulness – even if just for a few seconds.
So far, this has been helpful – over the past week, I’ve been averaging closer to 63 seconds of mindfulness per day. It’s not that much, but it’s way more than I was at a week ago.