Mind Full, Or Mindful?

When are you most happy?

It’s a tough question, I know, but just take a moment and think about it.

Personally, I always feel most happy when I’m deeply engaged in something.  It could be anything really, but always something that requires my complete and utter attention.

Whether it’s writing an article, a deep conversation, playing a video game, or preparing an elaborate meal – – I get into a zone and never want to get out of it.

I’m most productive in this state, and it is often accompanied by a sense of  accomplishment.

But apparently this is not the only reason I end up in a happy state.  A study by Matt Killingsworth posits that “stimulus-independent thought”, or “mind wandering”, actually causes people to be substantially less happy.

The reason for this is mostly because when your mind wanders, it usually goes to an unpleasant place.  But in fact, the study showed that even if a mind wandered towards a pleasant thought, people still reported being slightly less happy on average.

You can read more about his method and findings here:  Science Mag – A Wandering Mind Is an Unhappy Mind

So what can we take from this?mindfull-or-mindful

I think the most important lesson is to live in the moment.  To be ever-present and engaged in whatever we are doing.

Even if you are just watching TV, do it with some passion and focus!

Enjoy the moment, don’t waste it by thinking about something that you need to get done later.

Time is your most precious commodity. If you’re deciding to spend it on something, make sure you maximize the enjoyment.

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68 thoughts on “Mind Full, Or Mindful?

  1. Involvement is an essential part of happiness, I think, especially for creative-minded people. I learned that from a book called “Creating” by Robert Fritz. Being involved in something really keeps me feeling good. Otherwise, I just automatically start to think about random nonsense, and that leads to just being bored and in a funk.

  2. You definitely hit the mark. I overthink things to death, which causes nothing but escalated stress. I sometimes have to actively tell my mind to shut up and focus on the topic and moment at hand. Do you perhaps meditate? I would love to read a piece you’ve written about that. By the way, thanks for stopping by my blog!

  3. I think we always need to take time to be mindful – when we are mind full we need to take action to take time an refocus. Only then do I find peace in a crazy world.

  4. In “The Art of Happiness at Work”, Howard Cutler refers to this state of utter focus as “flowing”. I agree, it is awesome. I would love to one day have a stable job that I’m good at where I can “flow” every day. Still have yet to find it, although I think the closest I’ve ever come was when I worked part-time at a movie theater in high school.

    And as you may suspect from reading my latest blog entry, I am currently looking for work. When I first left my job I was very happy for the extra free time, but after 3 months I am starting to find that my mind wanders and dwells on unhappy thoughts.

    So the question is, for someone who has plenty of free time, how do you occupy your mind enough to still get in the zone often enough?

  5. And the truth prevails! I am definitely one to think about all of the things I need to “get done”, yet it is always those moments when I am so wrapped up in the moment when I feel true happiness. This concept takes practice, but it is always worth it.

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