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Tuesday, 17 February 2015

From naughty steps to mindful steps

Our very old mindful steps

Some homes have a "naughty step" which children must go and sit on without benefit of gadgets or toys when they break the rules of the house.

We never had those in our house. What we have are two "mindful steps".

These two steps, which date back, so far as I know, to the 1880s, lead to what would have been the kitchen and the maid's room. Therefore, people have hurried over these steps for more more than a century.

Recently I decided to look on these as mindful steps that can remind me to be mindful. The idea, simply, is that whenever I go up and down those two steps I will do so in awareness. This is known as a "mindfulness cue."

I have been surprised at how long it has taken to begin to be aware of them even part of the time as I use them. But I'm persisting and gradually I find the steps are beginning to pull me out of the trance in my mind and into present moment awareness more and more often.

I don't know if you have steps like those in your home but perhaps you have an equivalent: a door to a room you go in and out of a lot, for instance, or a window you open and close that you could use for the same purpose. If you do, I would be glad to hear of it.