Mindfulness is often described as being in the moment. Although this is an accurate description, it has a much wider explanation than this.
Mindfulness is giving focused awareness to the present moment, and doing so with kindness. It is the element of kindness that makes Mindfulness what it is.
We are often kind to others, but find it harder to be kind to ourselves. We feel lazy if we stop to unwind. We feel guilty if we take time to rest. We remember all the things we could be doing when we put our feet up for five minutes. And then, we beat ourselves up for even thinking about putting our needs first.
You’ll also know if you stretch yourself too far or spread yourself too thinly, you become ill. This is why relaxation is so important – especially for busy people – and why Mindfulness is a particularly useful technique to learn.
What are the benefits?
There are currently over 10,000 pieces of research on Mindfulness at the time of writing (and quite a few books).
The benefits include being a proven technique for:
- Effective relaxation
- Reducing stress and improving mental health
- Managing pain
- Improving the immune system
- Better sleep and reducing insomnia
- Enhanced concentration
- Lowering blood pressure and much more
Where and how long do I need to do it?
Mindfulness can be practiced anywhere: at home, at work, on the bus, in the doctor’s surgery, even in the dentist’s chair. You can practice for one minute a day if you like, although you’ll see the benefits sooner if you manage a bit longer each time.
Is Mindfulness a religion?
No, Mindfulness is a way of life. It’s something you can introduce in to your daily living whether you follow a particular faith or not.
The teachings behind Mindfulness are 2,600 old and based on the original discourse of the Buddha. Whilst Buddhism is recognised as a religion around the world today, the intention behind the teachings was to help people find peace amongst their suffering and live a more peaceful life. You don’t have to be Buddhist to practice Mindfulness.
Is it Mind control?
It’s more like Mind Management. Mindfulness is a technique which can help you manage unhelpful thinking and live a more peaceful life.
The strategies used help you notice your unhelpful thinking before it becomes a problem, or challenge it helpfully if it does. You are in control of what you’re doing when you’re being Mindful, that’s one of the things which makes it Mindfulness.
Why isn’t everyone doing it?
The most common reason people give up on Mindfulness is that they think they’re doing it wrong. If you’re new to the technique, have tried it but struggled with it, or want some guidance on how best to start, you could book a 1-1 session with me or join one of my classes.
Complete the form below for more details or take a look at the services page for details of next classes.
I will be creating my own video soon but in the meantime I love this explanation by “Mrs Mindfulness”.
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