Being mindful means being acutely aware of what is happening now—rather than drifting into the past or musing about the future—without emotionally reacting to these ongoing events. Maintaining a focus on the present is associated with a variety of improvements to physical and mental health. Practicing mindfulness can also enhance key aspects of intellect—in particular, the ability to pay attention. In this video, mindfulness experts Amishi Jha and Scott Rogers at the University of Miami, authors in the March/April 2013 Scientific American Mind, lead you through a short mindfulness exercise that can help you to assume this mental state more often—and reap its rewards. For more on the theory and benefits of mindfulness, see "Mindfulness Can Improve Your Attention and Health," in the March/April 2013 Scientific American Mind.
The views expressed are those of the author(s) and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.