‘My Mindful #StyleHacks’
So, what’s a Hack and what’s style?
Once upon a time I worked both directly and indirectly for the UK Government…In the saddle…Riding the range between Ministers, Civil Servants , employers and the economy.
A life of trains, planes and automobiles…90 hour weeks and meetings, meetings, lots of meetings!
But 2 things got me through it all more than everything else put together…Mindful Hacks and Tenue de Ville.
So, what’s a Hack?
To Hack is to improve — To get to know something — To think outside the box. To Hack is to collaborate — To Be agile — To Be responsive.
To Hack is to Be playful — To change the way things are done — To Be prepared to fail.
To Hack is to move away from rigid hierarchies — To adopt a problem-based, problem-solving approach — To Be transparent and accountable — To make new opportunities and give yourself permission to act on them.
Yes, exactly. How often do we feel unable to try, do, or start something, simply because we don’t feel we can, or should. No one has given us permission, so we don’t feel we have the authority to act and take that first step.
Well I gave myself permission to find out about Mindfulness, to understand it and incorporate it into my daily life, and then I wrote a book about it and a series of small vignettes too, with the overarching title ‘Mindful Hacks for Mindful Living & Mindful Working’.
The Italian author Guiseppe Tomasi de Lampedusa in his book ‘The Leopard’, has the character Tancredi remark, “Everything must change in order to stay the same”. Well with some small changes I was able to stay the same but Be different too.
Mindfulness enabled me to reset my bar and recharge my battery; thereafter approaching life with a renewed energy, passion and purpose.
My brightness switch was turned well and truly up and as my focus became sharper, my options became greater — I realised that I didn’t have to settle for how it was in any part of my life!
No equipment required
And I didn’t need any new equipment or new kit. I didn’t need to join a gym or hire a coach. I didn’t even need a lot of time. In fact 5 minutes of daily Mindful breathing practice really delivered for me.
Then I discovered ‘Tenue de Ville’
Which is not so much what you wear — although it’s more biased to the formal rather than informal — but how you wear it.
It’s basically style with a twist — the very own twist that you bring, which kind of suited the certain quirkiness and love of difference that I already had — and combined with Mindfulness it gave me a double whammy!
My imagination was captured and fired. My spirit was elated. I felt that I now fully fitted my skin, or as they would say in French — ‘I corresponds ma peau’!
Another great phrase n’est pas, and one that for me absolutely embodies what style should be — coming from within yet looking outward and being carried by a natural confidence, insouciance, elan and ready charm.
Then I was really able to bring it all together
As part of the deal when I was working in London, which being the seat of Government and home of Parliament, was most of the time, I was able to choose where I stayed — within reason, of course.
And I chose in fact a very reasonably priced hotel, slap bang in the middle of Oxford Street, and slap bang on top of the iconic department store, Selfridges.
What this meant in both the observance and the practice, was that each time I left, or returned to the hotel, I would do so by traversing the entire floor of the Men’s Wear department.
I half-jokingly referred to it as the peregrinations of a not so young Paul Mudd because one should never take themselves too seriously — but actually I became Bargain Billy.
I watched the Sales come and go and the items I pondered, mused over, tracked and pounced upon when the price became absolutely right, gladdened my heart, lightened my mood and put a wee kick in my step.
My Top Tip
So, my Top Tip, along with Be Mindful would be to make it your duty in life to always try and do at least one thing each day that gladdens your heart.
Act with a kind compassion to yourself and smile, because as T.S. Eliot wrote “Every moment is a fresh blessing”.
And my best bargain? An exquisite vivid rich pink pocket square by Vivienne Westwood.
As well as living life with passion and purpose, Paul Mudd is the author of ‘Uncovering Mindfulness: In Search Of A Life More Meaningful’ available on Amazon and www.bookboon.com; the ‘Coffee & A Cup of Mindfulness’ and the ‘Mindful Hacks For Mindful Living & Mindful Working’ series. He is also a Contributing Author to The Huffington Post and a Contributing Writer to Thrive Global. Through The Mudd Partnership he works with business leaders, organisations and individuals in support of change, leadership excellence, business growth, organistional and individual wellbeing and well doing, and introducing Mindfulness. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org and you can follow the continuing journey uncovering Mindfulness on Twitter @TheMindfulBook and at @Paul_Mudd