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We live in a time of information abundance, which far too many of us see as information overload. With the sum total of human knowledge, past and present, at our fingertips, we’re faced with a crisis of attention: which ideas should we engage with, and why? Big Think is an evolving roadmap to the best thinking on the planet — the ideas that can help you think flexibly and act decisively in a multivariate world.

A word about Big Ideas and Themes — The architecture of Big Think

Big ideas are lenses for envisioning the future. Every article and video on bigthink.com and on our learning platforms is based on an emerging “big idea” that is significant, widely relevant, and actionable. We’re sifting the noise for the questions and insights that have the power to change all of our lives, for decades to come. For example, reverse-engineering is a big idea in that the concept is increasingly useful across multiple disciplines, from education to nanotechnology.

Themes are the seven broad umbrellas under which we organize the hundreds of big ideas that populate Big Think. They include New World Order, Earth and Beyond, 21st Century Living, Going Mental, Extreme Biology, Power and Influence, and Inventing the Future.

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What is Mindfulness and How Does it Help?

March 24, 2013, 2:15 PM

What's the Latest Development?

A simple technique called mindfulness, or mindfulness meditation, in which practitioners intentionally pay attention to the present in a nonjudgemental way, has become a useful tool in the stress management toolkit. To practice mindfulness, find a quiet place to focus your attention—on your breath or perhaps on an object. "It’s not deep breathing, but rather experiencing when the breath enters and leaves. Feel the stretch in the rib cage, without me doing anything. Can I notice when the mind takes a hike and redirect it? That redirection is the exercise.”

What's the Big Idea?

While those who practice mindfulness report feeling less stressed and more at peace with their lives, the exercise cannot be done as a means to becoming instantly more happier. "While being aware of your feelings may be nice when drinking a lovely cup of tea or relaxing in a garden, part of mindfulness is also uncomfortable feelings—not trying to change or judge them, but being aware of them. And that may not feel so pleasant." Working toward a goal may be what parenting or corporate life calls for, but mindfulness requires us to be urgently, actively present.

Read it at the New York Times

Photo credit: Shutterstock.com



What is Mindfulness and How...

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