To define what mindfulness is, it helps to think about what it is not.
Captain Jack Sparrow gives us a perfect example when he asks “but why is all the rum gone?” He has been mindlessly drinking all the rum, and before he can consciously realise what is happening, there is no more rum.
Melli O’Brien describes mindfulness as “the opposite of mindlessness.”
For our good Cap’n Sparrow, that would have meant appreciating every sip of rum, noticing the warmth of his hand on the cool glass bottle, the tingle of the alcohol on his tongue, the burn in his throat, the wind through the palm trees, the stinging pain of Elizabeth’s slap on his cheek.
To be mindful is to be aware of, and to appreciate, every moment as it is happening.