Mindfulness is the polar opposite of everything I just described. In a nutshell, it means living in the present. Here is a slightly more elaborate definition that I found in Wikipedia:
Psychological "mindfulness" is broadly conceptualized, say Bishop et al.(2004:232), as "a kind of nonelaborative, nonjudgmental, present-centered awareness in which each thought, feeling, or sensation that arises in the attentional field is acknowledged and accepted as it is". They propose a two-component operational definition of "mindfulness".
OK, that was a quite a bit more elaborate, but well worth reading.
The first component involves the self-regulation of attention so that it is maintained on immediate experience, thereby allowing for increased recognition of mental events in the present moment. The second component involves adopting a particular orientation toward one’s experiences in the present moment, an orientation that is
characterized by curiosity, openness, and acceptance. (2004:232) The former mindfulness component of self-regulated attention involves conscious awareness ofone's current thoughts, feelings, and surroundings, which can result in metacognitive skills for controlling concentration. The latter mindfulness component of orientation to experience involves accepting one's mindstream, maintaining open and curious attitudes, and thinking in alternative categories [...]
What does this have to do with a weight loss/health/personal journey? A lot, in my opinion.
While planning and goal setting are laudable activities, without mindfulnesss, you can't fully benefit from the moment that you are actually doing all these wonderful things that you dreamed about or planned for so long.
The same applies when you're living in the past and rehashing all the horrible (though often minor) mistakes you made, turning them around in your mind. How can anyone move on when they can't stop themselves from living in the past?
Tomorrow and yesterday. I know what has already happened and yes, to a certain extent it helps me to forecast the future. But remember that famous line you find in every financial prospectus: "past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results". BTW, there are over 6 million hits for this phrase.
I think that if I have one new year's resolution, it is not to exercise more or lose more weight. My resolution is to live more in the moment: to be aware of how I feel, both mentally and physically and honour those feelings; to stop and smell the roses; to respect my hunger and my fullness now, not in some hypothetical future.
So I think this means that resolutions are out the window: my resolution is to be here now.