atoolkitforlife starter kit
Picture of Chris Cheung

Chris Cheung

Welcome to the ATKFL Mindfulness Starter Kit


So, perhaps you’ve heard of mindfulness or meditation recently but don’t know what exactly it means or how it can benefit you. Perhaps you’ve been put off by the religious or spiritual language surrounding the topic. This starter kit is here to help you to understand quickly what mindfulness is and to dispel some of the ‘myths’ of mindfulness and it does this by helping you to navigate through some of our key content. In this way we hope that we make you more curious about the practice and make it a bit clearer on how it could help in your life.

Table of Contents

What’s Mindfulness?

Our first article show’s two perspectives on what mindfulness is. The first, ‘operational’, view is presented by Jon Kabat-Zinn who indicates that mindfulness practice is the process of paying attention to the present moment non-judgementally. This useful definition introduces the process aspect of mindfulness i.e. observing and paying attention and also the ‘attitudinal’ aspect i.e. doing this process non-judgementally perhaps even with curiousity and interest. 

The second perspective is from atkfl’s founder, Chris Cheung, who reflects that ‘mindfulness’ may just be that ‘process of remembering that we are alive’; something that we often forget because of the busyness of our lives.

mindfulness is remembering

What is Mindfulness Practice?

Jon Kabat-Zinn’s definition points to mindfulness being attention on purpose in the present moment and non-judgmentally. Read this article for an even simpler definition.

What Mindfulness Isn’t

Many people see mindfulness practice as just a way to relax. Many also see the practice as a ‘passive one’. In reality the practice of mindfulness is an active one; one that requires a purposeful paying of attention as indicated in the first point above. In the same way, it is also not about getting rid of thoughts. Rather it is about witnessing your thoughts among the other experiences that you may be having – including your emotions and body sensations. The article here which summarises the included video from the Big Think covers this.  


What Mindfulness Is and Isn’t

Mindfulness and its practice can be hard to describe. For many it conjures up images of monks sitting in a monastery meditating, for others it is merely a way to relax.

Quotes to inspire you

On the atkfl instagram page we post daily quotes on the different aspects of mindfulness and they provide an ‘enlightening’ perspective of life. We hope that they can inspire you. 

‘Just where you are, that’s the place to start.’ Pema Chodron

A beautiful quote that elegantly highlights the practicality of mindfulness and the attitude we should bring to it. We often wonder where we should start, worried that our minds are wandering or that our environment is too noisy. To begin mindfulness practice you don’t need any special conditions; no lighted candles, no monastery. Just start where you are right now and if you can don’t forget to bring that touch of curiousity, or dare I say, humour too.  

‘Nothing ever goes away until it has taught us what we need to know.’ Pema Chodron

Another Pema Chodron quote which highlights another skill that mindfulness can help us with; that of being able to face and ‘be’ with our difficulties. We often want to turn away from the pain and difficulties in our lives but there can be great learning if we can approach these challenges with compassion and kindness. 

‘Treat yourself as you would treat a good friend.’ Dr Kristin Neff

And this quote emphasises that point about compassion even more. Often the person we are least willing to forgive is ourselves. Mindfulness practice is not just about developing our powers of focus and attention. It’s also about bringing that attitude of compassion into our lives. 

“If anyone is magically going to appear and just suddenly make your life better, just know that person is always going to be you.” Brianna Pastor

And perhaps one of the greatest teachings about mindfulness is this. That we have the capacity for agency in our life; to take control and make choices. In ‘automatic pilot’ where we are reacting to life and not really aware of the choices we are making, we can often feel that we have no choices. Mindfulness can help you to gain a different perspective of this experience, allowing you to step back and see what is happening from a ‘higher’ level. Giving you a better position to make choices.

Try out a Mindfulness Practice

But of course, you can’t really ‘get’ mindfulness practice unless you try it. So, here’s a short ten minute guided meditation from our founder Chris who will take you through a landscape of mindfulness through the practice called ‘the three step breathing space’. 

breathing space

The Essential 3 Step Breathing Space

The three step breathing space takes the practitioner on a journey of mindfulness practice. It begins by watching the sensations in the body, then thoughts and emotions.


More to explore

Mindful leadership

Inspiring, Mindful, Leadership

What an honour to be guiding this inspiring group of Leaders on their mindfulness journeys. In partnership with Business for Better Society…


What Mindfulness Is and Isn’t

Mindfulness and its practice can be hard to describe. For many it conjures up images of monks sitting in a monastery meditating, for others it

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