Attitudes of Mindfulness
December 8, 2022
Episode #80: Attitudes of Mindfulness
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About the Episode:
Regular meditation practice has been scientifically proven to rewire your brain to one that is more present, peaceful, and focused. This practice is aided by the 7 attitudes of mindfulness. Good news, friends, if you've never meditated you can still gain some of the benefits of meditation by incorporating the attitudes of mindfulness into your day-to-day life.
In this episode, you'll learn what the 7 attitudes of mindfulness are and how to start practicing them today.
Note: If you're new to meditation or would like a refresher, check out episode 10 where I teach you how to create a simple and consistent meditation practice.
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Full Episode Transcript:
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80. attitudes of mindfulness
Welcome to coaching for Latina leaders, the only podcast dedicated to the advancement of Latinas at every level of life with your host, Dr. Vanessa Calderon, a Latina with over 20 years of leadership experience, Harvard grad physician and mother of two.
Hello, my friends, welcome back to the podcast. Today, I want to introduce you to the seven attitudes of mindfulness and how to put them into practice. Now, this is not something for you to use to then go sit and meditate quietly, though, meditation is awesome. This is something that you can start using for your everyday life. Now, the reason why I'm bringing you this is this I have been meditating for, I'd say 15 years.
And in the beginning, it was very hit or miss often on I wasn't really committed to it at all. And then a few years ago, I was like, You know what, I'm gonna go all in. And so I started meditating every day. And about 30 days into my meditation practice, things started to change. Of course, things change, because your brain remodels because, again, our brains experience neuroplasticity, which is a fancy word to mean our brains are plastic, which means they'll shift to shape and mold based on what we experience. So he started meditating every day. And I started realizing that even when I wasn't meditating, when I was just going about living my life, I was so hyper-aware of things coming up for me, of my thoughts of my feelings, I would look around and be like, Oh, how interesting that that just triggered me. Instead of being reactive, which was amazing. And not just that, I also just started smart, like, things just started bringing me so much joy, and go outside.
And what I would see is the beauty in people, instead of the things that used to frustrate me. And the same thing with circumstances, there would be circumstances that used to bother me, a flight got canceled, a meeting was pulled back, somebody was showing up late, I started letting go of all that stuff, that stuff just didn't annoy me anymore. And again, it wasn't easy. It was definitely a journey for me to get here. But I share this with you. Because ultimately, underneath all of these are the seven attitudes of mindfulness. So I'm gonna share them all with you. And then I want I'm gonna ask you guys to challenge yourself and choose when to start practicing over the next few weeks.
Okay, so these seven attitudes of mindfulness are something that one of my dear friends reminded me of, in a retreat that I did. So I just put on this most amazing retreat, it was a retreat for a wellness and resiliency retreat for physicians and their spouses. And it was a bomb. It was so good. And I had a faculty that gave a lecture on mindfulness. And I was like, you know, I consider myself, you know, super curious human being, I love learning. I love learning more, even something like this, like I've been teaching this stuff forever. I've been practicing it myself forever. But I still want to be a student of all of this stuff. And that right there is the very first attitude of mindfulness.
The first attitude of mindfulness is having a beginner's mind. So beginner's mind means that you show up with curiosity about everything around you, you show up with curiosity. So at this retreat, this person was there, they were talking and sharing, and I could have done one of two things, I could have gone to the back of the room, and caught up on a bunch of emails because I had been taking a lot of time planning this event. So now I could have caught up on work. I could have gone outside, I could have taken a break. But I didn't. What I did instead is I purposefully sat in the front row of the audience. And I listened and I took notes.
And I started figuring I started asking myself, How can I learn this more? How can I apply this more to my life? That right there is curiosity, having a beginner's mind? I love curiosity because, in my mind, Curiosity is where confidence meets humility. Humility, for me just means being curious. Like, yeah, of course, I don't know all the answers. I'm still learning, I'm still becoming better. But that doesn't mean I'm not confident. I'm a super self-confident human being. But I'm also curious and I want to get better. So curiosity for me is where confidence meets humility. So in this sort of space of mindfulness, when you think about being curious or having a beginner's mind, what I want you to do is be curious about your thoughts. Be curious about your feelings. Like I mentioned in that example, in the beginning, I started noticing the things coming up for me the things that used to trigger me, I would say, Oh, interesting, that that person just yelled out loud. And that I feel triggered. Oh, how interesting that I'm feeling really resentful right now. How interesting how curious peek curious about your thoughts and feelings. Okay, that's the that's the first attitude.
The second attitude is non judging, non judging. Non judging is just so freaking interesting because what does our human brain naturally do all of the time, our human brain will naturally judge that's what the human brain does. Judges safe or not safe, good or bad, hot or cold? Is this person dangerous or not dangerous, the human brain just does that. And for the most part, that is what keeps us alive. It is beautiful. Thank you human brain for keeping me alive for not letting me get eaten by saber toothed Tigers back in the days, thank you.
However, it doesn't just do that for the things that are supposed to keep us alive. The human brain does it for everything, you feel jealous, your human brain is judging you, you must be bad. You see somebody down the street, you know, with like, I don't know what you would consider judgmental. But let's say an example of something I used to judge, I used to judge people that were really, really wealthy, because I had all these judgments about wealthy people.
And so I would see somebody driving a really fancy car, or somebody wearing something that seemed really over the top, when I would judge them. And, and then I would think that I was in the right for judging them. Because now my brain is offering me another thought. So whatever it is for you, that you judge, maybe it's you feel angry, and you judge yourself, because you should be calm, you feel resentful, and you should judge yourself, something must be wrong with me, I should be happy for them. Again, that is your thinking brain, that is what our human brain naturally does. And when you think about this, from an evolutionary perspective, it did it to keep us alive way back in the days.
But now it's doing it all of the time on hyper overdrive, and it's getting in the way of our internal piece. Because when you think about it, I want you to think about your brain as you having sort of two cells, your core self, your beautiful core self, your inner sage, those this part of you that's connected to your intuition that always knows the right thing to do. Versus your thinking brain. That's the other part. Your thinking brain, is that part of you, that's always offering you things that's thinking like, oh, my gosh, am I safe? Am I not safe? Is that person bad? Or good? Am I bad? Or good? Did I do this thing? Right? Did I do this thing wrong? Are they all laughing at me? are they judging me?
Again, your thinking brain is offering your judgment all the time. So when you think about this mindfulness attitude of non judging, what I want you to think now is I want you to create space between your thinking brain and your core self create space, by being curious by noticing what's coming up for me. Okay, so the first attitude is beginner's mind. The second is non judging.
The third is acceptance. When we talk about acceptance, it often feels like this very passive process. Like if I just accept everything for what it is, won't people just walk all over me. But that's absolutely not the case. Acceptance is not a passive process. Acceptance is a very active process, you need to be accepting the moment for what it is instead of holding on to expectations of what it should be. So when you think about it being an act of process, you start thinking like, How can I let go of these expectations? How can I accept this moment for what it is? How can I let go of what I think things should be, and instead accept the people around me. And one more thing I will say when I think about acceptance, because I like to see how I'm doing all of this, not just for things around me, but for myself, is how can you accept yourself in this moment? The same thing for non judging? How can you not judge yourself in this moment? How can you be curious about yourself in this moment? Okay, so that's acceptance.
Next is letting go. Now, the opposite of letting go is clinging or grasping, the opposite of letting go is ruminating, or getting fixated on things that just don't serve you. What does that cause? What is it cause when you ruminate, or you get fixated on things, or you start clinging and grasping, it causes anxiety, it causes a bunch of other negative things, right? Instead, what you want to do is you want to let go of expectations. You want to let go of thoughts that don't serve you. And you want to be present instead, with the moment just let it be let go and let it be. Let go and let it be. What's a good example here. So think about an ex boyfriend or girlfriend that you've had. Let's say that you broke up with this ex boyfriend or girlfriend and they're being clingy and they're grasping.
What does that make you do? It makes you be resistant and makes you not want to be there and makes you like push them away? More. Now let's say you break up with this ex boyfriend or girlfriend and you see that they're living their best lives. What does that make you do? All of a sudden, you're like, Oh, I miss them, I want them. And I'm not saying that to say that. When you when this person lives, their best life all of a sudden, now you want them. What? Bringing back to this analogy of letting go? What I'm saying is that when you're able to let go, that just gives you the power in that situation. Think about you breaking up with somebody, what would it be like if you were clinging and grasping versus letting go, when you let go, you have the power now, when you let go, you let go of all those expectations. And you can now be free.
I really like to think about letting go and adding love and let go love yourself in these moments and let go of this expectations. Love yourself in this moment and be free. Okay, so first attitude, beginner's mind. Second, non judging, third, acceptance. Fourth, letting go.
Fifth is trust. Trust, trust that who you are in this moment is enough. And a good place to start with trust is trusting in your body. So right now just tuned into your body. Are you walking? Are you sitting are you standing Are you driving, take a deep breath in.
Notice that your body always knows what to do. Your body always knows when to breathe. When to breathe in, when to breathe out. Your body will tell you my bladder is full. Your body will tell you I think it's time for us to eat. Your body will tell you it's time for me to rest. Trust yourself, trust your body. And know that who you are in this moment is enough.
Okay, the sixth, the sixth mindfulness attitude is patience. Patience. Now the opposite of patience is always trying to get to this next thing, this next event, this next achievement, which was a big one for me, I could never be patient where I was. One promotion wasn't enough, I was already thinking three steps ahead.
But suffering comes from the belief that joy or happiness is waiting for you in the future. Instead of seeing it all around you right now, in this moment, instead of being patient, loving where you are in this moment. You're looking for something in front of you ahead of you outside of you. So how do we appreciate patients? How do we practice patients, we practice patients by accepting the fact that life is a journey, except the fact that life is a journey that you're on. And you find joy in the day to day part of the journey. Again, the opposite is thinking that we need to get to that goal, we need to get to that achievement before we can start celebrating.
But that's not at all the case, we set goals. So there we're not wandering aimlessly in life. That's why we set goals. We don't set goals, because the thing that will make us worthy is achieving that goal. We don't set goals because I can't celebrate myself or my life until I achieve that goal. And we definitely don't set goals so that we can be hard on ourselves and we don't achieve that goal. We set those goals because we know we don't want to wander aimlessly in life.
But the real purpose is the journey that you take to get there. That is the real purpose. If you've ever read the book,The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho, of course, super popular book, a lot of you have read it, if you have an old girlfriend, go read that book. It's so good. It's called the alchemist. So in the alchemist, a little boy takes his trip. And it's his personal legend. And he thinks the purpose is getting to this goal. But ultimately, it was the entire journey along the way. And it's just a beautiful novel and story for him to show you how beautiful it is when you accept the day to day and accept the journey, and how life opens up for you when you do that. Because it will never be about achieving that goal. It will always be about the journey.
Okay, the last one here is non striving, non striving. Non striving is probably the most important core concept of meditation because when you're meditating, you're literally just sitting there not striving to do anything else. You're just sitting there breathing, being in tune to your body, watching your thoughts come up and letting them go, not engaging with them. That right there is this core concept of non striving. Non striving, again, is letting go of the thought that you always have to be doing something and instead just be in the moment be in that experience. One thing I like to remind myself of here is sort of the nomenclature of the species of our species. The WHO
Human species whatever we refer to, we are referred to as human beings right? Not human doings human be ings. Its inner being it's in the way we are. It's in who is our essence comes from our ways of being, not our ways of doing. Our essence comes from our ways of being, of being compassionate of being resilient of being kind of being giving. That is your essence, that's your human essence, not in our doings. There's this really awesome book, I'll share one last book with you. It's called the inner game of tennis by Timothy Galloway, it was published way back in the 70s. And it's this entire book that really frames how the body knows what it's doing. And you can always lean into your intuition, but it does it by explaining tennis. Now, I'm not a tennis player. But I loved that book, because I loved being reminded of how your body always knows. And when you let go, and you stop thinking your body would always know what to do.
Okay, let's refresh the seven attitudes of mindfulness. Number one, have a beginner's mind. So be curious of what's coming up for you, your thoughts and your feelings. Number two, non judging, non judging again, notice what you're thinking, notice what you're feeling, instead of engaging and being, you know, judging yourself for being good or being bad.
And number three, acceptance. Accept the moment for what it is, again, this is a very active process, not a pat passive process, you get to accept the moment for what it is, accept yourself for where you are in life, and let go of any other expectations. Number four, letting go oh, that sets you up for letting go right, you let go of all other expectations. Again, the opposite of letting go is clinging or being grasping. But when you let go, now you have all the power again, you have all the power, because you're letting go of the expectations of how something didn't work out about this person should have done that, or that should have happened this way. Let go of that. Stand in your power. That is the power here letting go. Number five, trust. Trust that who you are in this moment is enough. Start by trusting your body, noticing how your body always knows when to breathe, when to eat, when to sleep, when to rest.
Next number six is patience. Again, patience means that you accept the journey and you find joy in the day to day, you accept that the whole purpose of life is the journey, it's growing on your way towards your goal. That's the entire purpose. Because suffering again comes from the belief that joy or happiness is waiting outside of you somewhere in the future, instead of right now in this moment. And the last is non striving, non striving, again, being the core concept of meditation, it means that you really accept that your essence as a human comes from your ways of being from just being not from doing anything, but just from being.
Okay, so what I'm gonna ask you now have seven attitudes of mindfulness. And you noticed how you don't have to just use them when you meditate. You can use any one of these anytime of your life. So what I'm going to ask is, I'm going to ask you to choose one right now. Choose one right now, and start practicing it regularly. And see what happens. Practice it for the next 14 to 21 days, it will become a habit. And then come back to this podcast and choose a different mindfulness attitude to start practicing and make that a habit. And slowly you will start adopting all of this into your life and your life will transform.
Okay, my friends enjoy. Oh, and by the way, if you want practice doing all this, guess what? The doors are open to the Life and Leadership accelerator. The accelerator is my coaching program, where I meet with you in community, you get a bunch of really awesome education tools and codes and coaching to put all of this into practice. Okay, my friends. If you want to join us inside the accelerator, it's at VanessaCalderonmd.com/join Alright, hasta la proxima Adios!
Hey, if you love what you're learning, then you've got to check out my free Ultimate Guide to stop people pleasing, where I teach you a simple five step process to stop saying yes. When you really want to say No, you'll be so glad that you did. There's a link to the guide in the show notes. I'll see you next time.