What Is Mindfulness?
Mindfulness means maintaining a moment-by-moment awareness of our thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and surrounding environment, through a gentle, nurturing lens.
Mindfulness also involves acceptance, meaning that we pay attention to our thoughts and feelings without judging them—without believing, for instance, that there’s a “right” or “wrong” way to think or feel in a given moment. When we practice mindfulness, our thoughts tune into what we’re sensing in the present moment rather than rehashing the past or imagining the future.
What are the benefits of mindfulness?
Some of the benefits found by expert psychologists of My Fit Brain. The benefits of mindfulness are listed given below:
- Lessens worry, anxiety
- Lessens stress, fear loneliness & depression
- Enhances self-esteem
- Improves resilience against pain
- Increases optimism, relaxation & awareness
- Helps prevent emotional eating & smoking
- Helps develop a positive social connection
- Improves your mood & emotional intelligence
- Increases mental strength & focus
- Increases memory retention & recall
- Better cognitive skill & creative thinking
- Better decision making & problem-solving
- Better information processing
- Help manage ADHD
- Improves the immune system & energy level
- Improves breathing & heart rates
- Reduces blood pressure
- Lessens heart & brain problems
- Lessens inflammatory disorders & asthma
- Helps prevent arthritis
- Mindfulness and Feelings
- Acknowledge what is happening in the body and in the mind.
- What is going on here?
- In a compassionate, mindful way, notice what is going on when you feel this feeling.
- Experience and recognize the pure essence of the feeling.
- Feel what you feel.
- The stream of feelings is always with us.
- This stream of feelings is ever-changing and has pleasant, unpleasant, and neutral tones.
- Accept what you feel.
- Remember, what we resist, persists.
- Look into the feeling closely. Study the feeling.
- Notice how it feels in the body.
- Does it have a sensation of movement, temperature, density, or of color?
- What is the energy of the feeling like?
- What stories go along with this feeling?
- Is there a particular time of day when this feeling surfaces?
- Does anything immediately
- Does anything immediately precede the arrival of this feeling?
- How long does the feeling last? How do you feel after the feeling has passed?
- Feelings are like weather patterns. They arise and pass. They are not you. They are not your identity. They do not define you.
- Recognize the universal nature of the feeling: “Right now I am feeling this, and there are many other people just like me feeling this. Many who have come before me have felt this feeling and many who will come after me will feel this feeling. This is a human feeling.” “Breathing in, I am aware I feel. Breathing out, I meet myself with compassion.”
There is more than one way to practice mindfulness, but the goal of any mindfulness technique is to achieve a state of alert, focused relaxation by deliberately paying attention to thoughts and sensations without judgment
This exercise can be done standing up or sitting down and pretty much anywhere at any time. Either way, all you have to do is be still and focus on your breath for just one minute.
- Start by breathing in and out slowly. One breath cycle should last for approximately 6 seconds.
- Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth, letting your breath flow effortlessly in and out of your body.
- Let go of your thoughts. Let go of things you have to do later today or pending projects that need your attention. Simply let thoughts rise and fall of their own accord and be at one with your breath.
- Purposefully watch your breath, focusing your sense of awareness on its pathway as it enters your body and fills you with life.
- Then watch with your awareness as it works work its way up and out of your mouth and its energy dissipates into the world.
The exercise is designed to connect us with the beauty of the natural environment, something that is easily missed when we are rushing around in the car or hopping on and off trains on the way to work.
- Choose a natural object from within your immediate environment and focus on watching it for a minute or two. This could be a flower or an insect, or even the clouds or the moon.
- Don’t do anything except notice the thing you are looking at. Simply relax into watching for as long as your concentration allows.
- Look at this object as if you are seeing it for the first time.
- Visually explore every aspect of its formation, and allow yourself to be consumed by its presence.
- Allow yourself to connect with its energy and its purpose within the natural world.
This exercise is designed to cultivate a heightened awareness and appreciation of simple daily tasks and the results they achieve. For example, Each time you think a negative thought, you might choose to take a moment to stop, label the thought as unhelpful and release the negativity. or, perhaps each time you smell food, you take a moment to stop and appreciate how lucky you are to have good food to eat and share with your family and friends.
The intention of this exercise is to cultivate contentment at the moment and escape the persistent striving we find ourselves caught up in on a daily basis. Rather than anxiously wanting to finish an everyday routine task in order to get on with doing something else, take that regular routine and fully experience it like never before. For example: if you are cleaning your house, pay attention to every detail of the activity. Rather than treat this as a regular chore, create an entirely new experience by noticing every aspect of your actions. Feel and become the motion when sweeping the floor, sense the muscles you use when scrubbing the dishes, develop a more efficient way of wiping the windows clean.
Take a raisin or a piece of chocolate and mindfully eat it. Slow down, sense it, enjoy it and smile between bites. Purposefully slow down. Use all your senses to see it, touch it, smell it, and sense it. Then gently pop it into your mouth enjoys its texture, its taste, how it feels in your mouth. Let it linger and then swallow it. After you have swallowed it, let your lips turn up slightly and smile. Do the same things for each raisin you eat or bite you take? To more about mindfulness, get connected to our expert online mental health professionals at affordable prices. login to www.myfitbrain.in