Transforming Fear to Joy

 Wayne Dyer refers to mindfulness as paying attention to “what’s happening right here and right now, independent of my opinion about it.”  In today’s business jargon, mindful people are those who have excellent social, cultural and emotional intelligence and skills.

From its early origins, mindfulness was practiced by Buddhists as one of eight disciplines on their path to enlightenment.  Although early Buddhism emphasizes mindfulness of breathing, it includes nine other forms.

  1. mindfulness of the Buddha
  2. mindfulness of the Dharma
  3. mindfulness of the Sangha
  4. mindfulness of giving
  5. mindfulness of the heavens
  6. mindfulness of stopping and resting
  7. mindfulness of discipline
  8. mindfulness of breathing
  9. mindfulness of the body
  10. mindfulness of death

In its simplest definition, mindfulness is the act of being aware in the present moment.  Given this definition, most might consider themselves mindful.  For example, I can hear the snowplow outside my window as well as my computer processor running in the background while I write.  However, mindfulness runs much deeper than what we perceive around us.  It includes a “calm awareness” of one’s bodily sensations, feelings, thoughts and conditioned behaviours.  It is this calm awareness in the present moment that enables us to discern the truth (what is really happening) and thus take the right course of action.

Being able to discern the truth without it being coloured by our interpretations or judgments requires us to set aside our ego and view reality without judging our present moment awareness.  When we perceive something through our ego, we compare it with our mind which uses our past experience and knowledge.  Our mind then labels the person, event or thing as pleasant or painful — judgments.  When we perceive something through our innocence, that calm awareness, we do not see it through our mind, we see it truthfully, as though for the first time everytime and without judgment.

Our innocence, in the present moment, sees with curiosity and interest and leans into the sensation, feeling, thought or behaviour.  It draws the sensation close and discovers what it is through the experience of it rather than the idea of it.  History is bypassed because we are not viewing through thought but newly discovering each moment without judgment (thought plus feeling).

It is probably becoming clear as to why the business world has be