by Justin Standfield
No. 5 They challenge their existing beliefs.
Make no mistake, being mindful offers us moment-by-moment opportunities to challenge our own beliefs about all sorts of things – beliefs about ourselves, about our work, about right and wrong, about other people…even about the world. Where does this challenge come from? In addition to specific techniques that focus on our assumptions and beliefs, it arises out of the core attitudes that mindful people adopt so that they can nurture mindfulness – these include curiosity and non-striving. When you are open-minded and curious, you’re more willing to be challenged; when you allow yourself to experience whatever your experience is when practising mindfulness (rather than creating a fixed goal and then striving to attain it), that’s non-striving. What comes up as a result of non-striving is often a surprise and can be positively challenging to our existing beliefs or fixed assumptions. The option to transform our fixed habits of thinking and seeing the world can be an incredibly empowering benefit of mindfulness. Even when we challenge our own beliefs, it doesn’t mean we have to change them.