Being mindful allows for congruence in our thinking and actions.
Congruence is something that most people don’t even think about. However, most of us hold conflicting beliefs. We just keep moving along in away that is not congruent because it’s a habit. Mindfulness action causes us to look at these conflicting beliefs and actions and make decisions in the present moment in order to be more congruent. Congruence is the quality of agreeing or being in harmony, corresponding in character and kind. Using this concept as a guide to our behavior allows for unified action and thinking. In other words, as an example of congruent thinking and action, if you say : we should be fiscally responsible then if you are congruent in your actions and thinking (or saying) then you would not spend money beyond your current means, and you would probably save a large portion of your income. But that is not what most people do they say one thing and they do another incongruent thing. Sure we can say it’s because of the culture or other pressures but that doesn’t solve the incongurence issue.
What I’ve noticed is that as adults we repeat verbally what we heard and we repeat actions that we saw. So when our caregivers’ were incongruent that got passed on. Often we don’t even see how our actions and beliefs are not congruent. In review of our actions we can see the inconsistencies. This is one of the things I have been writing about when I encourage you to question what your emotions are. I am attempting to get you to look at your own internal inconsistencies in thinking and action and give you an opportunity to evaluate what you think now and what action you want to take in harmony with that thinking in the present moment/situation.
The goal of such investigation is not to blame the original situation but rather to increase your own mindfulness action.
So why am I calling this article building trust? Because in order to build trust we need to act in ways that are consistent with what we say. And what we say needs to be congruent with what we think and do. That’s the definition of being trustworthy.
This is a foundational concept in parenting; it’s paramount for relationship building and building character and self-esteem.
Simple idea that’s actually very challenging to incorporate into your being without a focus on mindfulness. At first, try to do this with something simple. Listen to what you say and look at what you do and evaluate whether it seems to be consistent. If it isn’t then figure out what belief and action together are more descriptive of who you are.
Have fun with it! Use humor/laughter and be kind to yourself as you go through this process. This is serious but humor makes the learning process more joyful. In my experience, being able to laugh at yourself is a sign of good self- esteem.
See you tomorrow.