Improving Your Well-Being With Mindfulness
What is Mindfulness?
Mindfulness is an awareness of our thoughts, feelings and the world around us.
Our usual way of being is often referred to as ‘automatic pilot mode’ and Mindfulness is a practice of training our attention to activity happening in the present moment in a non-judgmental way.
How does Mindfulness help your health?
By learning to be in mindful mode more often, it is possible to develop a new habit that helps to weaken old, unhelpful and automatic thinking habits.
With practice, mindfulness can serve as the perfect remedy for stress relief and can provide a feeling of relaxation.
Evidence has shown that it can be an effective tool for many mental and physical health issues.
How can I achieve mindfulness?
If mindfulness is a different state than our normal way of being, how can we achieve it?
Mindfulness is a skill that takes time to develop, and there are many different practices that support the development of mindfulness, including meditation, movement, or even being in nature.
Is mindfulness right for me?
Mindfulness is a suggested treatment for some people who suffer from common mental health problems such as anxiety, depression and stress and it can also help manage anger.
A recent study showed that mindfulness based cognitive therapy was just as effective as treating recurring depression as anti-depressants.
Although these results are promising, you should never stop taking medication without speaking health professional first.
How do I start?
Here are a list of mindfulness exercises you can start today:
1. Counting your breath
Find somewhere comfortable to sit and place your feet flat on the floor. Make sure your back is supported and your shoulders are relaxed with your arms in your lap and close your eyes.
2. Mindful observation
This exercise is designed to connect us with the natural beauty of the environment.
Choose a natural object from your surroundings, for example- a flower, a leaf, an insect or even the clouds in the sky.
Focus your complete attention on this object for 1-2 minutes and do not concentrate on anything else apart from this object. Imagine you are seeing it for the first time.
Consume yourself with its presence and explore every aspect of it’s formation.
Study it’s energy and it’s natural purpose in the world.
3. Body Scan Meditation
Lie on your back with your legs and arms extended at both sides with your palms facing up.
Focus your attention on each part of your body from head to toe or vice versa.
Study any sensations or emotions associated with each part of your body.
4. Walking meditation
Find somewhere quiet, up to 20 ft in length and start to walk slowly.
Focus on your experience of walking and be aware of your movements and the sensations that keep your balance.
When you reach the end, turn around and repeat, continuing to be aware of your sensations.
5. Mindful eating
Mindful Eating pays attention to the taste, look and textures of what you are eating.
Focus on how it looks, if it is hot or cold, what it tastes like and how it feels in your mouth.
People who meditate are happier, healthier and more successful to those who don’t.
The benefits of practicing mindfulness and meditation are amazing.
Like any skill, mindfulness takes practice. So if you think it doesn’t work for you, keep on practicing.
The only thing standing between you and your goals is a bit of willpower and direction.