The Beginner’s Mind

A zen buddhism concept which I love which helps you to get out of habits which are not good for you and realign you with your true self.  This is called The Beginner’s Mind and means that you are letting go of preconceived opinions and are open to learn something new.  If your mind, which is your thoughts and emotions, is ready to learn something new without prejudgment, without negative opinions, and without any opinions and is ready to learn.  This is being open and responsive to new ideas.

Zen buddhism talks of being empty, having an empty mind.  Being empty of these things which hold us back from learning something new.  Being empty of these things which prevent us from starting afresh, putting away habits which are not good for us, and habits which prevent us from moving on, habits which sometimes we don’t even know why we keep doing these things and we need to look with new eyes and with an empty, open beginners mind.

How can we cultivate a beginner’s mind?  Meditation, Mindfulness, Reiki, are three ways which help us to cultivate a beginner’s mind.  More ways include: becoming less negative, especially when you are listening to people telling you something that you haven’t heard before.  Self reflection, looking at your habits, and asking yourself why you do some things repeatedly, especially if these habits have caused you problems in the past.  You could keep a journal, and them this could help to highlight when you repeat behaviours and thoughts and emotions which are holding you back, preventing you from moving on, preventing you from starting afresh, or preventing you from finding a new direction, or from finding yourself again.

Having a beginners mind will help you find more options, so that when you want to do something or be able to bring something new into your life, you will be able to think of more ways to do whatever it is your want.  With a beginner’s mind, you will be more open to other people’s new ideas, and suggestions.  With a beginner’s mind, you will be able to find more solutions when you have any problems.

Often the most limiting thing in this world is they way we limit ourselves and hold ourselves back.  And if you have had other people around you who have been holding you back and limiting you their negative beliefs and comments about your abilities become internalised.  Having a beginner’s mind helps you to reassess any negative ideas and beliefs about yourself.  And it is true and we can start afresh any time we want to.  We can find our path and start a new path whenever we want to.

Having a beginner’s mind opens us up to new possibilities.  When we are looking for something and we think negatively about whatever comes our way.  This prevents us from seeing something new that has good potential for us.  Not being able to hear without prejudging and being too quick to judge as well, often prevents us from allowing someone else to help us.  It prevents us from allowing something new to begin and to be available in our life.  Instead hold back on judgements, hold back on your own ideas, your thoughts, and simply hear, listen and observe.

Cultivating a beginner’s mind helps us to see things from other people’s perspectives.  This helps in relationships, it helps to prevent arguing, helps when having discussions and when trying to find solutions in discussions with other people.  Being receptive to hearing someone else’s perspective and acknowledging their point of view without being judgemental helps to build relationships and helps friendships grow stronger.

If you are looking for a new job, or something new in your life or if you are at a cross roads and needing a new direction, having a beginner’s mind will open up many new possibilities.  Things you didn’t think you could do and things you had not thought of doing before.  It helps to bring new opportunities into your life.

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