The Importance of Trust in Practicing Mindfulness - dummies

The Importance of Trust in Practicing Mindfulness

By Shamash Alidina, Joelle Jane Marshall

Trust is important in mindfulness because you can’t expect mindfulness to give instant results. You need to trust in the process for anything between a few weeks to a few months before you notice any benefits. Without that genuine trust, you may not put your heart into the process and thereby reduce the chance of enjoying your journey into mindful living.

After you trust your ability to engage in mindfulness, you develop patience, dedication, willingness and regular practice. These attributes are likely to lead to some positive outcomes and your trust will grow.

Trust is the thread that helps you to maintain your meditation practice when you face the feeling that it’s not working for you. If you start to feel frustrated when you meditate, you need to trust that this is just a feeling to observe as part of the process.

Where you place your trust is where you place your power and therefore your entire attitude. Many religions talk about the importance of faith. When you can let go of your critical mind and have some faith in a particular approach, even just for a few weeks, you allow time and energy for the process to work.

Skepticism is healthy, but a total lack of trust prevents you from trying out the mindfulness approach in the first place. Balance your skepticism with trust and see what happens.

Here are some ways of building your trust:

  • Decide on the length of time you wish to practice mindfulness every day and stick to your decision. If you just stop whenever you feel like stopping, the process doesn’t really work. You need to work through your feelings in the mindfulness practice.

  • Research the benefits of mindfulness to help you to see how others have benefited from mindfulness and to help you trust the approach.

  • Meditate with someone more experienced in mindfulness practice. Just being close to someone with more experience can have a positive effect, showing how you can change as you deepen your commitment to mindfulness.

  • Ask yourself: ‘What needs to change so that I fully trust in mindfulness, for the next few weeks or months?’ Jot down your answers on a piece of paper and consider adopting some of them.