What is Mindfulness?
I have heard a lot about this subject recently so I decided to take a look at what it means to be mindful.
‘Mindfulness’ is increasingly recognised as an effective way to reduce stress, increase self-awareness, enhance emotional intelligence, and effectively handle painful thoughts and feelings.
Although mindfulness has only recently been embraced by Western psychology, it is an ancient practice found in a wide range of Eastern philosophies, including Buddhism, Taoism and Yoga.
Mindfulness is about waking up, connecting with ourselves, and appreciating the fullness of each moment of life.
Practising mindfulness helps you:
• to be fully present, here and now
• to experience unpleasant thoughts and feelings safely
• to become aware of what you’re avoiding
• to become more connected to yourself, to others and to the world around you
• to increase self-awareness
• to become less disturbed by and less reactive to unpleasant experiences
• to learn the distinction between you and your thoughts
• to have more direct contact with the world, rather than living through your thoughts
• to learn that everything changes; that thoughts and feelings come and go like the weather
• to have more balance, less emotional volatility
• to experience more calm and peacefulness
• to develop self-acceptance and self-compassion
Mindfulness training has emerged as a powerful, evidence-based tool for enhancing psychological health. It has been clinically proven in a wide range of clinical disorders, including chronic pain, anxiety disorders, depression, PTSD, OCD, substance abuse, and borderline personality disorder.
The practise of mindfulness enables you to:
• improve focus and concentration
• increase self-awareness
• reduce the impact and influence of stressful thoughts and feelings
• facilitate better relationships
• catch self-defeating behaviours, and substitute more effective ones
• become aware of self-defeating thought processes, and ‘let them go’
Mindfulness can help you with your spiritual work.
• Facilitates empathy, compassion, and unconditional positive regard.
• Allows you to stay focused and present, even when your client is not.
• Helps you stay grounded, centred and composed, even in the midst of clients’ emotional turmoil
• Enables a healthy attitude to therapeutic outcomes: neither complacent nor overly-attached.
• Helps you maintain direction and focus for readings or healing
• Increases your skills at observing your clients’ responses.