The beginning of self-awareness is mindfulness. In my view mindfulness is simply closing down the rational part of my brain and opening up my whole being to all the sensations around me. It is focusing on the beauty of this world. It can be a walk along the ocean shore with the pungent scent of the salty air. It can be a stroll through an old growth forest with light filtering down through the maples and the scent of decaying vegetation filling my nostrils. It can be the sound of my bird friends greeting the new day by singing their hearts out about the joy of living. Mindfulness is immersing my soul in the sweet energies of nature and shutting down the noise of this world and the negative energy of my negative thoughts.