The foundation for how we bring communication skills into our conversations in any context is presence. What is presence? I define presence as embodied awareness. Presence is a synonym for mindfulness, but when we hear that word “mindfulness,” most of us think about paying attention in a cognitive way, because of the word “mind.” I’m paying attention, watching, looking—there’s some separation. It’s a little cold, maybe disconnected. That’s not mindfulness. Mindfulness is about intimacy with experience. It’s a deeply embodied awareness and knowing of life in a very direct way.