Imagine that you have 30 minutes of time completely to yourself…
You have a flash memory about how much time you used to have to just hang-out and do nothing. ‘When did life get so busy?’ You wonder nostalgically. In a bid to revisit the feelings you have come to associated with your youth, you decide to listen to your favourite music. You put on an album that teleports you back to the good old days every time time you hear it.
You press play.
But alas, something is wrong. The player starts shuffling from song to song. You can’t get into the groove as the player keeps going back and forwards, constantly stuck on “previous” or “fast forward.” All you wanted to do was press play and listen to music for a while! Frustrated, you give up.
Today, we’d like you to open to the idea that your brain is similar to an MP3 player. It would be hard to experience your favorite music in real time without being able to just hit “play.” For many people (especially under stress), the mind is largely occupied reliving the past or anticipating the future, which makes it difficult to fully experience the present moment and meet its demands of us.
But don’t worry, there’s plenty of growing evidence based on a strategy that could help your brain stay on “play” for longer: mindfulness meditation