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This is definitely a question that is commonly asked and quite frankly interchanged often in our culture. I know I have been guilty of this as well!
Let’s break it down simply…because I’m all about simple!
Being mindful is simply taking a moment to acknowledge and appreciate where you are in a particular moment. It’s about observing your breath, observing your surroundings, observing your body, and the hardest one – observing your thoughts, particularly without judgment. Mindfulness is the first initial step in working toward your own personal meditation practice.
Meditation is the state of being, an intentional practice that focuses inwardly to one’s mind and spirit. The Buddhist Center refers to it as, “a means to transforming the mind.” People often confuse meditation with an actual act, something that you do; however, that is not correct. Over time, your meditation practice will develop effortlessly and you will find that the activities that you do throughout the day will now be done with more ease and awareness.
Both mindfulness and meditation allows us to get off auto-pilot living and create a more intentional, grounded life. Begin with simple mindfulness of a mundane act. Be fully present in the act discouraging all distractions. Then, take the next step into meditation and practice simply being in the moment.