More on mindfulness and the true spirit of mindfulness:
"It may look like we are doing nothing when we sit....but actually we are exposing ourselves to ourselves." Brad Warner, (Zen Wrapped in Karma Dipped In Chocolate)
A lot people believe, including those who offer the scientific/ program-based mindfulness training, that mindfulness involves being able to create space away from our thoughts, sensations and emotions while staying tuned to the present moment. And that's about it, end of story.
While that is what happens when we practice mindfulness, its true spirit and function is to study ourselves honestly. This is often confronting because we don't like what we see in ourselves. However, it is through looking honestly and closely at all our warts and spots that we gradually develop freedom from them.
Focusing can be considered one way of using mindfulness to study ourselves.
So next time you practice mindfulness, take a moment to also look, in the quiet between your breaths (or footsteps if you like walking mindfulness), what comes up inside. Look at them curiously. I wonder what you'll find.
I've already started to make some preliminary discoveries about myself, my anxieties and my excuses....