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Mindfulness Without Action Risks Creating Inertia

action awareness yin yang circleMindfulness can be a great way to tackle stress and generate a sense of calm. But isn’t there a danger that if we only live in the moment, we don’t address the causes of the problems we were are trying to overcome, asks Thomas Webb.

Be careful that Mindfulness isn’t being used as a distraction technique or otherwise get in the way of concrete behavioral change. If we want to complete projects and launch positive follow-up initiatives, then we may need to look beyond the “now” and tackle the roots problems that underpin how we are currently feeling.

Fight inertia: Create plans that specify how to achieve your good intentions. Identify a good opportunity to act, a suitable response to that opportunity, and link these two things together in an “if X happens, then I do Y” format, which often helps people achieve their goals.

Planning ahead has the advantage that it is a problem-focused coping strategy that attempts to tackle the cause of something rather than purely focusing on alleviating its symptoms. While Mindfulness may help to foster the necessary mind-set required for change, problem-focused strategies like planning ahead must be put in place to determine what needs to be done to move something from where it currently is to where you’d like it to be in the future.