Being Mindful about Mindfulness: An Invitation to Extend Occupational Engagement into the Growing Mindfulness Discourse
Elliot, Michelle L.
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Elliot, M. (2011) Being Mindful about Mindfulness: An Invitation to Extend Occupational Engagement into the Growing Mindfulness Discourse, Journal of Occupational Science, vol. 18, , pp. 366-376,
This paper provides a rationale for the recognition of mindfulness in the occupational science discourse. There is a plethora of diverse scholastic interest in mindfulness, however not within the occupational science discipline. Mindfulness has a natural fit with occupation; its informal practice of awareness cultivation facilitates heightened engagement in and attunement to activity and the formal practice of mindfulness through meditation is itself an occupation. This paper reviews mindfulness and its contribution to enhancement of life quality and personal well-being. Additionally it speculates why mindfulness is not adequately represented in occupational science literature and research, and provides rationale for the inclusion of mindfulness into the discipline's field of investigation. In constructing this rationale, mindfulness is differentiated from the psychological concepts of flow, consciousness, and presence which in the literature are more commonly associated to participation in occupation. The author's own mindful experience while engaged in occupation serves as a backdrop against which to support the inclusion of mindfulness into occupational science scholarship.