Mindfulness is in vogue. In almost every women’s magazine is covering the subject. The emphasis is on “women”, because even when it comes to mindfulness, scientific backing and studies on the subject, women are often the focus of discourse. Many men refuse to engage with the topic. And that’s because there is simply a wrong understanding of the term “mindfulness” in our society, our author finds …
To drink tea. To do yoga. Complete breathing exercises. Have a meditation session. Take a bubble bath. All such things are usually associated when talking about mindfulness. And these are also the tips that you read in relevant women’s magazines. Hardly surprising that many (mostly heterosexual) men in my circle of acquaintances shrug their shoulders at the topic. Because a bubble bath, that’s really not for tough guys! And yoga just looks silly. Mindfulness? I do not need that!
“Take care of yourself!” I write to a dear colleague. He told this morning that tonsillitis is approaching. “Yes, yes,” is the laconic answer. And a few seconds later: “Are we going to go jogging together tomorrow morning?” Almost indignantly, I write back what an outrageous idea that would be and you should not do sports with an impending tonsillitis. I adjust my colleague: It has nothing to do with strength or masculinity to cheat.
Why men are not so careful
But that’s where the problem lies, when it comes to being careful with yourself. “Mindfulness”, as the English term used to be, is often equated with weakness in our still patriarchal society.Thanks to the completely outdated “work hard, play hard” thoughts, many men in my circle of acquaintances work their sore and sore They also boast about how much overtime they are doing, how little sleep they get during the week, wow, very impressive.
The true meaning of mindfulness
But if you are mindful of everyday life, you do not have to walk around the area exclusively in yoga pants or you have to constantly participate in singing bowl meditation sessions. If you like, you can of course do that. But mindfulness starts much earlier. Mindfulness means to be in the here and now not only physically, but mentally as well. This is not normal for most people. Regardless of whether you are a man or a woman, many rush from one thing to the next in everyday life, missing out on the most important thing: the actual moment. The thoughts are constantly circling around the annoyance of yesterday and the things that need to be done. This quickly creates the feeling that there is always something. Added to this is the pressure to perform, which is constantly increasing in our society. The constant accessibility through smartphones and the self-image that you absolutely want to fulfill: To be an efficient person who nothing umht – no overtime – and no tonsillitis. All this gnaws at one. In the long term it makes dissatisfied. Maybe even unhappy?
Mindfulness does not require expensive courses
Mindfulness is not a question of sex, but a question of stress levels. If you feel stressed, you should try to integrate more mindfulness into everyday life. You do not necessarily have to go to courses that cost a lot and make the schedule even fuller. Instead, the first rule is: stop multitasking! Especially in the office I observe (also on me) that many do many things at once: working on a presentation, answering mails, discussing things with colleagues, rushing to the next meeting. Experts have always emphasized that the brain can not do this. It does not matter if you’re a man or a woman, switching back and forth is extremely stressful – and makes for even more stress. And mistakes also make you faster.
First rule is: stop multitasking!
The second crucial aspect of mindfulness is: to respect the moment without judging it. Because humans tend to evaluate everything around them. But those who focus on just leaving that rating out of their thoughts – practice mindfulness. And this is where breathing actually comes into play. If you notice that the thought carousel starts up again, you can create a distance to your thoughts by concentrating on your own breathing.
What else helps?
- Concentrate in the shower not on the To Do list of the day, but on the warming water and the good feeling that this triggers for you.
- Focus on breakfast at the taste, not on the grocery list.
- When cycling, notice the wind – or at the train aware of the ambient noise.
The deliberate breaking of routines, for example, to take another way home, or to eat with the left instead of the right hand, can help. Whatever the matter of mindfulness, the goal is always to be more serene. And serenity is something that stands for men and women alike … right?