What is Mindfulness?

my own definition based on how I teach

renee tarantowski
3 min readJun 9, 2022


Photo by Lesly Juarez on Unsplash

Let’s begin with the dictionary’s version:

a mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations, used as a therapeutic technique.

I’d accept that.

I would add non-judgemental acknowledgment.

I would edit out the words “therapeutic technique.”

How I teach mindfulness

  • clear seeing
  • awareness
  • paying attention
  • presence
  • clarity
  • non-judging awareness
  • fully present
  • awake
  • openness
  • tenderness
  • moment-to-moment experience
  • recognition
  • compassion
  • gentleness
  • balance
  • healing
  • open-handed
  • “as is”
  • truth
  • intention
  • grounding
  • loving-kindness

It is all of these things together and separately.

It is seated, standing, walking in bliss or agitation. But, for my students and I, it takes time to be present with each other — on our good and hard days. On days when we a skillful and on days where we are unskillful.

It is about showing up!

Us humans try to complicate everything.

What would life be like if we could just show up? And show up with a loving heart. To show up as a light?

It’s all about choice.

“Between stimulus and response is the power to choose.” My favorite quote from Viktor Frankl. As I dive into his writings and teachings more and more, I see human beings having this Earth experience, our souls having yet another experience.

What if you looked at your life as a blip in history? Things shift when we sit mindfully and…



renee tarantowski

Health and Wellness Writer, Educational Psychology, Adventurous Momma to 4, healer, teacher, traveler, everyday creativity.