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  • Writer's pictureClaudio

Cultivating Mindfulness for Deeper Connection and Fulfillment

Unlocking the richness of life through present-moment awareness, genuine engagement, and consistent positive action.

Woman smiling and enjoying coffee while living in the present moment.

Have you ever experienced talking to someone who, before you finish expressing your idea, responds as if they already understood everything you wanted to say, without giving you enough space to express yourself clearly, completely, and calmly?

It seems like that person is everywhere except right in front of you, listening attentively and with genuine interest to deeply understand what you're saying. What you're really saying... beyond mere words, which don't always suffice to fully communicate an idea. In fact, typically 70% of human communication is non-verbal.

And if that person is concentrating - usually without realizing it - on quickly connecting the information they're receiving with some similar situation in their memory, or with some future situation they desire or fear, they'll hardly grasp the REAL essence of our message.

Most likely, they're only catching the beginning of our message and filling in the rest with past emotions stored in their memory and/or with future emotions created by their mind in that very moment, which leads this person to a state of eagerness, prompting them to produce a response before they've finished listening to us.

Obviously, doing this implies missing out on a large part of the received content, with different effects on personal and interpersonal life.

Why does this happen? Why do we sometimes behave this way too?

Well... very often, we live our lives with our minds flying between the past and the future.

Amidst happy memories that bring us joy and sometimes nostalgia, amidst less happy memories, which bring us sadness, guilt, shame... etc.

Everything that comes from the past creates biases through which we see and live our present, preventing us from experiencing our present in a "pure" way... because generally there's a bit of "emotional past" in our present, coming from those happy and less happy memories through which we tend to filter our present.

This doesn't mean we shouldn't learn from the past... in fact, perhaps one of the most significant functions of the past is to apply the lessons learned in past situations to our present... but this is completely different from seeing the present through a filter loaded not with the information learned in the past, but with the emotions we experienced while learning different things in the past.

Learning can be an harmonious process, especially if we're open to seeing what life shows us…, and sometimes it can be a much tougher process, especially if we find it difficult to open up and see the new possibilities that life offers us (I mean TRULY see, in a deep sense and beyond the surface of each thing that happens in our lives).

Alright, and what about the future?

Because…, our mind can also spend a lot of its time between desires, expectations, goals to achieve, projects to carry out…, eagerness, fears, and anything else that may be, in one way or another, emotionally connected to the future.

And the present? Does anyone remember its existence?

In reality it's the only one that exists "right now". Or perhaps past, present, and future all exist simultaneously... which, from our three-dimensional perspective - we live in an environment of only 3 dimensions... or at least that's what most people perceive currently - would put past, present, and future on the same, single plane of existence... all... "at the same time". But this is another argument..., for some people perhaps more related to spirituality, for others more related to quantum physics and the behavior of electrons, photons, and other particles that make up light, matter, and everything that exists, including us obviously..., and for others related to both of these things!

In any case, as far as the focus of the argument we're seeing is concerned..., it's the "focus" of our mind... or the lack thereof, that will allow us to live - from an emotional point of view - every second as if it were the first of our lives, perceiving the REAL meaning of that specific moment, of that specific conversation, of that specific gesture..., or instead, as an emotional heir of the good or less good emotions we've experienced in the past, which in turn, can also create expectations, eagerness, or fears related to the future.

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Some people might describe this process of "loss of existential innocence" as part of the learning process...

If I touch a hot pot without any protection, I'll probably burn my hand. By touching it, I've learned that it might be prudent to use some kind of protection for my hand when I want to touch a pot and I don't know what temperature it's at.

Now, the next time I see a pot, before touching it, I can put my new technique into practice... (maybe an oven mitt, or something that serves the same function), and I can touch this new pot with the same "innocence" as the first time..., plus the MITT! But emotionally light..., and open to see, feel, intuit, and perceive, all the possibilities that this new pot may bring to my life.

Or..., I can put on a mitt and approach the pot, in any case, with a feeling of fear and pain, as a real manifestation in my "new present", of the not so positive emotions I've experienced in a similar past situation, and of which I haven't yet let go. That is, I've decided to see my present through a filter loaded with past emotions. These past emotions will change the light under which I see my present reality, and therefore will influence both my perception of it and the decisions derived from this perception... Since it's a distorted perception, not 100% real.

The decisions I make about everything that happens in my life, from this point of view, could be based on real information, and on emotions truly connected with everything that happens in the present..., or they could be based on a distortion of the current reality, as perceived under the light of past emotions, which will attribute an emotional burden of another moment, different from the present. This moment could be in the past or in the future, but not NOW.

Ideal Situation

Imagine what it would be like to perceive each situation as if it were unique (indeed, every situation is unique), just as it really IS now, not as a similar situation was in the past, or as I imagine a similar situation could be in the future.... We're talking about seeing and living only what really IS.

For some people, this may seem like too passive a position..., but for you, I hope it's quite the opposite! I mean, by doing this, you're giving space for reality to exist (not in an ephemeral and passing way, but to truly exist in the present), and you're taking the necessary time to "be present" by focusing your mind on the here and now, to fully appreciate this reality.

If you're watching a seagull flying near the beach..., don't think about the email you're going to write in a couple of hours..., focus your mind on how that seagull flies. Probably, the excitement and/or eagerness connected with the email you were thinking about before, will instantly turn into a feeling of deep and REAL inner peace.

That moment belongs only to you..., and to the seagull! It doesn't belong to the email, nor to the person who will receive that email.

Your mind is an instrument..., and it's YOUR mind. Not the other way around.

That is..., your mind is part of you, and like any part of your own being, it exists for your sake. You don't exist because of your mind.

Now, the mind is an infinitely and exceptionally powerful instrument, and it needs to be focused on something continuously...

Whether it's on your breath if you're meditating, on the flight of the seagull if that's what you're focusing on, and so on.

As a concept, it's extremely simple...

If you see a dog in the park, instruct your mind to focus on that dog (if you like dogs, you'll appreciate its beauty like never before). And if you're "actually" writing or thinking about how to properly write an important email..., instruct your mind to focus ONLY on that email..., not on the dog you saw a couple of hours ago in the park (you'll write the best possible version of that email).

Despite sounding simple and easy - like almost everything in life - it's a matter of practice, repetition, and assimilation/naturalization of the behavior you want to incorporate into your life.

For example...

If you're talking to someone..., don't think about the response that person might give you once you've finished your speech..., focus your mind only on what you want to convey. Then, once the other person has actually given you a response, you'll think/feel what to respond as a continuation of the conversation.

If you're listening to what another person is saying to you..., don't rush, listen with the intention of truly understanding beyond their words. Open your inner space to empathy, compassion, and anything else that allows you, during the time you're listening to this person's message, to see reality from THEIR point of view. This will allow you to "feel" deeply the origin and the reason behind everything that this person is trying to communicate to you.

Obviously, seeing reality from another person's point of view doesn't mean sharing that point of view..., but perhaps it can be essential to generate a response based on the reality of the moment, and not on positive or less positive emotions that our mind has quickly picked up from our past or from our future (hypothetical future…, because we don't know it yet).

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Practical Solution

As we were saying before, our mind is an instrument at our service and not the other way around..., just like a muscle that allows us to perform a specific action, in the physical realm of our existence, here and now.

If our muscles can increase in strength and efficiency with which they contract, and keep improving with practice, willpower, and perseverance..., now our mind can also both increase its capacity to focus on what's really happening at a given moment, and on the efficiency and quality of the reasoning it produces based on the REAL information it perceives during a state of focus on the "now" of each thing.

If you decide to start running..., normally, you'll progress more quickly with smaller and more frequent workouts than with larger but less frequent workouts..., even with an equal amount of total work done in both cases, a higher frequency will allow you to adapt more quickly..., that is, the amount of effort that used to seem difficult for you to sustain will progressively become a natural part of your everyday life, of the way you function without it requiring any kind of effort.

Agree? Alright..., it's the same with the mind!

Give yourself - because you deserve it - a couple of minutes of "deep focus on the present" just when you wake up and before going to bed. This can simply be looking at a painting in front of your bed and focusing on its small details, on the subtle color variations, on how you FEEL while you observe it with a mind focused only and exclusively on that painting (I'm talking about focusing our attention like a laser light, only on a single point..., nothing beyond that point exists at that moment).

Repeat this experience with something different... (because routine things can become boring), before going to bed. Remember to explore how you FEEL, what emotions arise within you during these experiences. Look for your balance, your inner peace, the joy of not thinking about anything...

At this precise moment, at this precise point of focus..., everything is fine, and nothing requires your mind's analytical capacity. You're just in observation/appreciation mode..., while "floating" peacefully in the serene sea of your inner peace.

If you like what you feel (inner balance usually feels good...!), try to look for similar moments throughout each of your days, always a little more frequent than the previous day... While drinking coffee, while walking in the park with your dog, while truly communicating with a person.

You'll see that the taste and aroma of coffee are different when you "enjoy" the moment (laser focus on the coffee and NOT on your phone or anything else, person, or thought).

The green of the plants in the park seems greener than before, maybe you notice the singing of the birds (which you didn't notice before), and your dog seems happier than before, because you're here and now..., walking with him... You haven't allowed your phone to "steal" this moment by occupying your mind with phone calls you might not have made or made at another time.

And the person you're talking to seems to finally be able to express their ideas much better than before..., maybe you, by slowing down the conversation and focusing on the present of that moment, are really listening. If the other person, seeing your example, starts to do the same..., your level of communication and - as a direct consequence - your relationship in general, will reach levels unknown until now.

Living in the present moment and truly engaging with each experience, conversation, and interaction can profoundly enhance our lives and relationships.

By focusing our minds on the here and now, we allow ourselves to perceive the richness and depth of reality, free from the distortions of past emotions or future anxieties.

This practice requires mindfulness, patience, and a willingness to let go of preconceived notions and distractions. As we cultivate a habit of deep presence and genuine connection, we unlock the potential for greater understanding, empathy, and fulfillment in our lives. So let us embrace the power of the present moment, savoring each breath, each interaction, as a precious gift of life.

Qué tengas un maravilloso día!



If you find yourself resonating with these topics and are eager to further explore personal growth and development in a collaborative environment, I invite you to join our BlaBlaCLUB (Live Conversation Classes). Where many of our topic-specific classes are specifically tailored to delve deeper into discussions surrounding personal growth and self-improvement…, in Spanish!

It's an opportunity to engage with like-minded individuals, share insights, and embark on a collective journey of growth and transformation. Visit our platform to learn more and become part of our community dedicated to learn Spanish…, while nurturing personal growth and success 🙂 

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