I recently composed an article about my inner competitiveness. If you didn’t read it, it’s okay. The thought I was trying to convey is this: the drive to be competitive dampers my quality of work. I’ve come to realize the deeper issue, though. It’s not just competitiveness. It’s a lack of mindfulness.

I’m not mindful.

I’ve dabbled with meditation in the past, but I’ve never committed to it as a full-time practice. I recently joined David Cain’s Camp Calm. I’m only two days into the material, but I’m learning more about myself than I thought possible. The thought that stuck with me today is being mindful.

I'm guilty of not living in the moment.

  • If I'm taking a shower, it's to get clean so that I can get to the next thing.
  • If I'm fixing a bug in a codebase, it's to get it done so I can get to the next thing.
  • If I'm eating dinner, it's to stop being hungry to that I can get to the next thing.

The next thing is where I have been living my life, not in the present. I’m not enjoying life’s little moments. What if I did the following?

  • Focus on the shower I'm taking, not the next thing I need to do. I can concentrate on the warm water and the joy I get from being clean.
  • Take the time to understand, fix, and try to prevent that bug in the code. Instead of ravenously hunting it down, I could take steps to see how it got there.
  • Enjoy every bite of my food and the company, if any. I could take the time to taste the food. I eat very fast, which is also a contributor to my constant weight gain.

The practice of meditation aside, mindfulness is something I we can use more.