Mindfulness Class to Teach Students to Remain in Present

A man meditates in nature. Moyan Brenn/FlickrKayla Desroches/KMXT

Sometimes people get so caught up with the daily grind that they forget to observe what makes the moments in their daily lives unique. A class about mindfulness Sunday will aim to make students more aware of the here and now. The leader of the workshop Sunday, yoga instructor Veronica Costa-Bolton, says mindfulness is a personal effort to get out of autopilot.

“A lot of times in our day, we can go through a routine. We get up, we get into our cars, possibly we go to work, we talk to people, we finish with work, maybe we have some food afterwards, we come back. So, we get into a routine. And the mind is capable of so much more than just basic routine.”

She says often the mind drifts off and focuses on what’s for dinner or what needs to get done that afternoon.

“Basically, people who live in their head could definitely benefit from mindfulness. What it does is say, okay, stop a minute and come back to what is happening right now. Don’t check out. Stay present. And allow yourself to notice and be a part of what is happening right now, because that’s what’s real.”

Costa-Bolton says mindfulness training offers techniques to help people participate in life in the moment. She says breathing is one method.

“The breath is a wonderful way to sort of snap you out of whatever mind scenario is going on, so if people for example would take just one deep breath every time they sat down, so just before you’re going to the computer, you’re going to work on something, you sit down, take a deep breath and then start what you’re doing.”

She says there are fun ways to be more conscious in everyday actions.

“For example, try working with your non-dominant hand, so for most of us that’ll be our left hand, but for left handed people that’ll be your right hand, and try brushing your teeth with your left hand or try just eating part of your dinner with your left hand. All of sudden, you have to pay attention because it’s not as easy.”

Costa-Bolton says mindfulness gives people more time and mental energy to live their lives as opposed to just planning them. The class will begin at 2 p.m. Sunday in the Kodiak Public Library.

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