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Refrain from offering platitudes

Refrain from offering platitudes such as, "'I know how you feel'" or "'Things will get better'" to those who visit his center. "Often times when someone close to you is going through difficulty, we want to cheer that person up with lots of nice sayings, but the truth is, you don't know how this person feels. Rather than wanting to change that situation, just be there. When you say those common phrases, it is often yourself who cannot bear the grief that the other person is going through."

-- Haemin Sunim, author, The Things You Can See Only When You Slow Down.

Mindfulness is a skill that people can develop over time and "can practice in small acts," such as decluttering, says Sunim. "Decluttering is one way to reconnect with some of the memories of each item you have and realizing that everything is impermanent. If you realize this, you will lessen your attachment to material things."

Marie "envisions decluttering in terms of relationships with the material, whether it brings you joy or happiness," says Sunim. "She considers joy and how your mind has spiritual elements. It isn't just about cleaning up. It's about whether you are finding joy in the process and in the end result."

To use himself as an example, Sunim describes how he practices mindfulness even while walking, a daily activity which he loves. "Walking here in Manhattan can be hectic, but I try to relax and walk very slowly and regain that sense of joy."


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