Have you found yourself driving on autopilot following a well-trodden route when, instead, you were supposed to be going somewhere else. Most of the time we are running on autopilot. Mindfulness lets us choose where to focus our attention, opening ourselves to details of experience that we may have missed for years. When we are operating from auto pilot, we tend to react habitually without access to the fuller picture. But by noticing all the surrounding detail at any given time, we can avail ourselves of a greater range of choices when it comes to dealing with our experience. Our habitual patterns of behavior can also cause us problems. These habits may be outmoded, but because of their automatic nature we are unaware of this fact, think of it as wearing clothes that you've long outgrown!
Mindfulness training helps us to be more aware of how we think, feel and react to conditions, which seem outside our control. With mindfulness we can be open-minded, receptive and adaptive to what is actually happening, choosing to become aware of self-limiting behavior. When we get trapped inside the box of our habits of thinking, feeling and acting, not only do we lose our ability to be adaptive and creative but we also lose our connection with life itself. Mindfulness gives us the tools to rediscover the richness of experience and to gain more freedom within our lives, through the cultivation of awareness. Awareness = choice = Freedom. Not only does mindfulness help us skillfully navigate the challenges of often frantic daily life, mindfulness gives us the opportunity to live life with meaning and purpose.