I have spent most of my life in
When a back injury prevented me from doing what I’ve always done, I was forced to think differently. Thankfully I discovered The Mindful Way Workbook: An 8-Week Program to Free Yourself from Depression and Emotional Distress, which introduced me to a much freer way of living. (See my previous post How and Why I Learned to Breathe.)
After reading the first chapter I realized how much I’ve been missing with my goal-oriented and over-achieving mindset. I was particularly moved by the seven core features of the doing mode. I created the following graphic to help others assess their own propensity to “do.”
If you find yourself more prone to the doing mode of living, there is good news. The first step to a different way of living is recognizing it. According to the authors of The Mindful Way:
If we can see clearly the different disguises in which the doing mode shows up in our daily lives, we’ll see how, in feature after feature, being mode offers an alternative that will free us from the grip of the ruminative worrying mind.
There is more good news when it comes to cultivating the being mode. Practice and intention matter. As the authors say in the concluding chapter:
Clear intention is what carries us through, so that we practice whether we feel like it or not—not by forcing ourselves, but by reminding us of what we truly value. In truth, we all already have within us a deeply rooted motivation that can sustain our practice and support us to act when painful emotions arise. It is the simple, precious birthright we all share to care about people—including ourselves.