“The most precious gift we can offer others is our presence. When mindfulness embraces those we love, they will bloom like flowers.” – Thich Nhat Hanh
While we are advised to maintain more physical distance between ourselves and other people, perhaps we can close the gap with our presence. The need for connection is wired deep within us. How can we continue to meet this need for ourselves and others when we need to maintain some physical distance?
Mindfulness is the act of intentionally and openly paying attention to what is unfolding in the present moment, without judgement. Perhaps we could bring the quality of mindfulness to how we see the people around us… even how we listen. In practice this means putting aside interruptions and judgments, arguments and opinions, thoughts related to our own stories that arise while we see and listen to others. As with other mindfulness practices, when thoughts arise in our minds, we kindly bring our attention back to the person in front of us, to seeing and listening.
Receptivity to our friends, loved ones, colleagues, even casual acquaintances can be a source of abundance, even while other things in our lives seem to be limited or constricted.