Four Foundations of Mindfulness: The Journey To Being More Present

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Getting to know more about your body, your mind, and how you exist in the world can improve your life in many ways.

In fact, many people have transformed how they perceive the world by incorporating mindfulness more deeply into their lives.

The four foundations of mindfulness focus on the areas of ourselves that we naturally worry about.

But what are the four establishments of mindfulness teaching us?

Knowing more about these four things doesn’t have to be a difficult thing to do.

Using tools like Blinkist for easy understanding of the most popular texts on meditation and mindfulness, you can learn how you can improve your life, too.

What Is Mindfulness?

Mindfulness is the practice of learning how to be fully present and aware in a moment.

It involves being in the present, without being easily distracted or overwhelmed by the judgments of the world.

Rather than reacting to the world or being overwhelmed by it, the idea of mindfulness is to simply be.

By focusing on being intensely aware of your senses and feelings, you can relax your body and mind, reduce stress, and create a healthier lifestyle.

What Are the Different Types of Mindfulness?

Mindfulness practice typically incorporates some type of mediation to focus intensely and specifically on emotions and senses.

There are different types of mindfulness practice that is done to create the right atmosphere and style for meditation.

As you begin to practice mindfulness, you will want to explore the different types of meditation to find out which one is going to work best for your needs.

  • Body scan meditation
  • Movement meditation
  • Breathing space meditation
  • Expanding awareness meditation

No matter what type of mindfulness practice you set out to try, always remember that the core idea is to focus and be fully present.

Make sure you do everything in your power to not bring stress or judgment into your awareness.

The Four Foundations of Mindfulness

Mindfulness, as it was drawn from early Buddhist practice, is primarily focused on four foundations.

If you think that this practice is something you wish to try, here are the fundamentals you may want to keep in mind:

1. Mindfulness of Body

Buddha suggested that followers of mindfulness focus on seeing the body as a body and not strictly as yourself.

After all, the body is made up of many different parts, and we should focus on these parts individually to better envision it.

The body is a physical form that can fail us, and it will eventually pass away. This must be recognized as you study mindfulness.

2. Mindfulness of Feelings

Feelings can be divided into three main categories:

  • Pleasant feelings
  • Unpleasant feelings
  • Neutral feelings

By better understanding when each category of feeling arises, what happens when that feeling is present, and how we get rid of that feeling, we can better understand our minds.

Our minds can only be understood through their states, so regarding feelings is very important.

Learning that feelings are impermanent and exist only as one of many things can help you curb how reactive you are to difficult situations.

Like your body, feelings are selfless and do not make up who you are.

3. Mindfulness of Mind

Mindfulness practice focuses on understanding how consciousness works through things that you experience in the world.

Information comes to you from the outside through your senses and on the inside from things like memories and daydreams.

The mind is not just consciousness but is a reactive force that is influenced by both internal and external factors.

You are more than just your thoughts, and you can get a better understanding of that if you are able to understand your mind as a detached entity.

4. Mindfulness of Phenomena (dhammas)

The fourth foundation takes on a bit of all three previous foundations and asks you to seek to more deeply understand all phenomena as they happen.

How do things happen, what makes them happen, how do they go away, and what can we do to prevent them from happening again?

Things like jealousy, love, hate, poverty, and more have been examined through this lens for hundreds of years.

As a human, you have the unique ability to look at your own mind and try to understand it; you can do the same when looking at the world around you.

what are the four foundations of mindfulness

What Are the Pillars of Mindfulness?

The pillars of mindfulness, originally written by Jon Kabat-Zin, are an idea that allows those practicing mindfulness to focus on these seven things while seeking balance.

It can help while learning the idea of mindfulness to focus on these seven attitudes and how they can be incorporated into every aspect of your life.

What Are the 7 Attitudinal Foundations of Mindfulness?

These seven pillars of mindfulness should be applied beyond just when you are meditating for the best effects.

1. Non-judging

Automatically judging something as good or bad can take away from your overall understanding of the world.

It is better to be aware of judgments that may be happening automatically in your mind.

Awareness of these judgments will help you be more critical and understanding of the world around you.

2. Patience

Rushing through life or through your practice of mindfulness will get you nowhere faster. Instead, focus on living in the moment.

Being present in what is happening in the here and now is more likely to benefit you than being impatient.

Having some thought about the future is okay, but being too focused on it can cause greater peril.

3. Beginner’s Mind

The world is always changing, and that is why you need to remember to approach most things as if you are a beginner to them.

You have not experienced everything that there is to see and hear. There are infinite possibilities in the world; be open to them.

4. Trust

You will only be able to find peace if you are able to trust in yourself and your intuitions.

Letting your ideas guide you to the right path will help you find happiness better than if you rely on the judgments of others.

Be open to learning from those with different experiences, but remember that your choices should reflect your own beliefs.

5. Non-Striving

Who you are is always going to be enough.

Even though you are hoping to gain things like greater trust in yourself through your practice of mindfulness, the idea is not to make yourself different.

Striving to be different will distract you from your true goal of being present in the moment and understanding who you really are.

6. Acceptance

Acceptance is not about accepting things you find upsetting or not right in the world.

Rather, acceptance is accepting there are certain facts in the world, and you must accept those things as they are.

Death is a certainty, for example. Denying it will do nothing to further your examination of your mind and the world around you.

7. Letting Go

It is very easy to become wrapped up in worrying about the world around you or about the things happening in your mind.

Stress rises, and it becomes hard to focus on anything. Letting go of these distractions is essential.

Freeing yourself from worry and fear will allow you to be more present in your life and move forward on your own path.

Exploring the Four Establishments of Mindfulness With “Unplug”

Unplug by Suze Yalof Schwartz serves as a great introduction to meditation.

Meditation is often used by people to take control of their own mind to become happier, healthier, and more in touch with the world they live in.

When working on learning more about mindfulness, learning how to meditate is likely to be a key step.

Without meditation, it is unlikely that you will be able to truly work on and connect with the four foundations of mindfulness.

Meditation can work to permanently alter your brain to make it easier to think about things in specific ways, and that idea is discussed thoroughly in this book.

As you adjust the attitude and structure of your brain, you can bring mindfulness into your life more intricately.

With the help of the book Unplug, you can learn to do all of this with a few simple tools and a few minutes of your time each day.

Let Blinkist Help

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When you’re looking to engage with ideas new to you, such as mindfulness, there are many book titles that can help expand your knowledge.

Having time to read all of those books and fully grasp their contents, however, can be difficult. That’s where Blinkist comes in.

Blinkist is a platform that creates “Blinks” of popular works from many categories.

These Blinks are quick, easy-to-process summaries of the most important ideas from these books.

Through these written and auditory summaries, you can learn from many books in a short amount of time.

Consider Blinkist as a great way to continue to expand your knowledge of spirituality, self-awareness, and much, much more!

Conclusion

With the four foundations of mindfulness as part of your toolkit, you can do more with every single moment of your life.

From being more aware of your effect on the world around you to being more comfortable with yourself, you can do it all.

The new power you have gained through learning more about mindfulness can help you grow even more.

Use the power of summaries on Blinkist to help you expand in other important areas of your life, such as your career, your love life, and your home life.

What are you going to do now that you have taken full control of your life?

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