Mindfulness is not a performance, but a way of being, a physical state. It is a state of contact with the here and now. It is a state in which the mind is in contact with the body, since the body is always in the here or now.

In psychotherapy, the word mindfulness has recently been used to describe a tendency to lessened reactivity and lessened impulsivity. Lessened reactivity can be a result of mindfulness, but it is not the essence. Many people are slow to react or hesitant to act, but this is often from 'freezing' and inhibition.

Mindfulness, like love, is perhaps a concept that is broader even than the search for feeling and purpose. However, it has an aspect that is relevant to a satisfying lifestyle. That aspect is taking care of things.

We live in a disposable culture. It often makes economic sense to throw things away and buy new things. However it does not always make feeling sense. In order to take care of things, it is necessary to really look at and feel in the hands the object. This brings us into the 'register of the real' where the tyranny of the ego is less. Washing dishes is different from throwing away paper plates. Cleaning and putting away tools is different from leaving tools out, using them carelessly, and buying cheap replacements. Relating to things not as objects in their own right but as only momentary extensions of the ego may arguably be 'efficient' at times, but it contributes to estrangement from the self.

If inanimate objects are not treated as real, how then can animate objects be experienced as real? If objects are disposable, and consist merely of their function, will not other people become disposable and consist merely of their function? For instance, a woman that is seen as consisting only of her sexual function and as disposable after sex is said to be objectified. (The word 'objectified' in popular use means exactly the opposite of what I mean by being an actual object in this web page, and I admit that is confusing)

By way of illustration, hoarding is a practice that arises from not being able to take care of things. That is, acquired things are not experienced as real, physical, separate objects. If taking good care of things is a consistent practice, then acquiring things is self-regulated.