Jumping to conclusions – Frank Liddy – Mindfulness Monday

Pilot in front of plane
Welcome to this week’s Inspire Mindfulness corner.

In this week’s mindfulness corner, we will explore, how we see things. Sometimes folk find themselves assuming based on the information that they see.

How many times do we get this wrong? A good friend of mine in San Francisco, told me a story once about a time when there was very little airport security, a way back some fifty years ago, long before September 11th. The story goes like this….

An aeroplane flew from New York to San Francisco and due to the size of the planes back then and the amount of fuel they could carry would take them halfway.
So the plane would fly from New York and land midway to refuel. The pilot would inform the passengers that it would take about two hours to refuel and that the passengers could on landing get off the plane and go for a stroll on the tarmac to stretch their legs. The plane landed and passengers disembarked onto the tarmac.

The pilot was walking through the plane and there was a passenger sitting in her seat. Her name is Betty and she’s a frequent flyer, Betty is also blind. The pilot explained to Betty that the plane had landed and offered to escort Betty onto the tarmac so she could stretch her legs. Betty thanked the pilot for his offer but preferred to remain on board. She did however ask the pilot I’d he would be kind enough to take her guide dog buddhi for a walk and let buddhi stretch his legs. The pilot agreed and told Betty that he would be honoured.

The pilot put the lead on buddhi and preceded to the exit door of the plane.

Meanwhile on the tarmac passengers were walking about stretching their legs, they stopped looked up at the plane. There was the pilot with his pilots hat and sun glasses on plus buddhi the dog. Some of the passengers were shocked by what they seen. Pilot, dark glasses and buddhi the guide dog. So much so that they wouldn’t get back on the plane.

Get the picture, some of the passengers thought that the pilot was blind.

How many times do we find ourselves assuming what we see?

Mindfulness practice has a way for us to come to our senses, to join the dots rather than jumping to conclusions. This week’s mindfulness practice, is to pause and notice, to explore with a curiosity, what we see. To look with new eyes for the first time without judging.

“The real voyage of discovery consists, not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes” ( Marcel Proust )

Here’s wishing everyone a wonderful week.

Frank Liddy

Frank Liddy, Lead Mindfulness Practitioner for Inspire Professional Services | B.A, A.Dip.

About Frank Liddy

Frank has worked in the community care voluntary mental health sector for over twenty-five years and currently delivers Mindfulness Programmes for Inspire.

He is the founding Director of the Belfast Mindfulness Centre, co-founder of Compassion City Belfast and Northern Ireland’s representative for The Mindfulness Initiative.

Frank studied mindfulness at the University of Wales and is a qualified integrative humanistic Counsellor and holds certificate of registration for NI social care Council.

As well as teaching mindfulness compassion through the life-long learning programme at Queen’s University Belfast, he has also successfully delivered experiential and practice-based training programmes to mental health and allied professionals working in psychiatry, nursing, social work and the criminal justice system.