SO…WHAT EXACTLY IS MINDFULNESS?
Mindfulness is essentially being aware of the present moment; being aware of our environment as well as ourselves. It originates from Buddhist meditation, with the work of Jon Kabat-Zinn and his Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction programme (MBSR) contributing largely to its increasing popularity.
There are a number of ‘core’ features of mindfulness which includes:
- Observation: ‘being’ rather than ‘doing’. Observing your surroundings, thoughts and feelings.
- Detailing: noticing and appreciating the details of the objects you encounter in everyday life.
- Full participation: being full engaged with your experience.
- Non-judgement: a shift from analysing to accepting experiences.
- Focus: to ensure there is full concentration on an experience and knowing how to recognise and return when you lose focus.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS?
There are a number of advantages to practicing mindfulness meditation. They include improved mental and physical health along with the improved ability to focus and mange stress adequately.