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Randi Kreger has brought the concerns of people who have a family member with borderline personality disorder (BPD) and narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) to an international forefront through her best-selling books, informative website, and popular online family support community Welcome to Oz.

 
 

More about Mindfulness: Doing Things In the Moment


By Gillian Galen, the assistant director of training and senior psychologist at the adolescent borderline personality disorder unit at the Harvard-affiliated McLean Hospital. Gillian is the coauthor (with Blaise Aguirre, MD) of Mindfulness for Borderline Personality Disorder: Relieve Your Suffering Using the Core Skill of Dialectical Behavior Therapy.


The next skill that is fundamental to how you practice mindfulness is learning to do one thing in the moment. Dialectical Behavior Therapy founder Marsha Linehan calls this doing things "one-mindfully." When you are reading, just read; when you are talking with a friend, focus only on the conversation; when you are eating, eat; when you are walking, just walk. Let go of all the thoughts racing around in your mind and do just one thing in the moment.

Most of us tend to do many other things, like reading the paper, checking e-mail, answering texts, and doing other things at the same time that we are walking, eating, or talking to a friend. Doing one thing in the moment is a powerful and useful, yet challenging, skill that is particularly relevant in our fast-moving society.

Initially, doing one thing in the moment may feel as if you are slowing down too much and won't get anything done. This can feel impossible. Some days, you will find it easier than others. But you may find that whatever you choose to do, in the end you will get it done more effectively, efficiently, and with much less stress! In addition, your feelings of mastery will increase.

Doing one thing in the moment works best if you practice throwing yourself completely into what it is that you are doing. Full participation in something often quiets the mind, and many people find that fully participating in an activity brings joy and some peace.

Mindfulness Practice One Thing in the Moment: Eat Breakfast

When you have breakfast tomorrow, simply sit and eat your breakfast. Don't read the paper, scan at your e-mail, or read the cereal box. Notice your experience. Notice when you become distracted by urges to do other things, and bring yourself back to the full experience of eating breakfast (experiencing the tasks, smells, temperature, and so on).

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