“If you take care of each moment, you will take care of all time. There is only one time when it is essential to awaken. That time is now.” Jack Kornfield
One way to navigate life is by trying to control your external circumstances. No matter how hard you try you will never reach that goal. Along the way, your health and relationships may suffer, your stress levels will increase and your sense of satisfaction will decline.
Another option is to learn to pause, consider and respond to external circumstances with thoughtful action.
Mindfulness is about making what you are doing right now the most important thing in the world.
The formal practice of mindfulness happens by making space and time each day to bring your awareness to what is happening right now.
When you do this regularly, a few things happen:
Reduce Anxiety and Stress
Through the practice of mindfulness, you will learn how to examine, tolerate and digest your stress and distress in an ongoing way.
There are several techniques in mindfulness that can help with anxiety and the reduction of stress. Breathing techniques, meditation and mind mapping are just three of these methods. The key point to remember with each of these methods is that they benefit you by helping you refocus and reduce the triggers in your life. They help you sort out the issues that you would normally stress out over and eventually have anxiety over. Mindfulness also helps you cope with future issues to avoid an immediate reaction and increased anxiety regarding the situation.
Body acceptance is something you may not think of when you think of mindfulness. The truth is, body acceptance can contribute to your stress and anxiety and how you view the world around you. Over the course of using meditation and other techniques, you may find the source of what is triggering your body related issues. You may also find the route of your weight loss obstacles and unhealthy choices that you make during triggered situations that cause you stress. Once you begin working with mindfulness techniques you will start to see a better appreciation for yourself, your body journey and where you are in the moment.
Sometimes we just aren’t happy with our lives. We aren’t happy with different aspects that we feel we can’t change and must simply deal with. This can lead to depression and other issues. Mindfulness can help you find gratitude for various aspects of your life, recognise people in your life that are toxic and find ways to keep what works and get rid of what doesn’t with grace and acceptance. This can lead to life acceptance and accepting the events that happen for what they are at that moment.
Mindfulness can build the capacity to accept, tolerate and transform painful mind and body states without reacting so intensely to them. By allowing and accepting and getting to know yourself, you’ll become more skilled at managing unruly and disruptive feelings and thoughts, therefore, learning how to respond creatively to stressful situations and relationships rather than reacting habitually.
These benefits are just a starting point for mindfulness in your life. There are other benefits that will start to reveal themselves to you as you become more involved in the process.
Gaining these benefits can be as simple as closing your eyes and being silent for a few minutes a day. This is a practice that is so easy, anyone can do it!
There are many courses and books available on the subject of mindfulness.
Personally, I have done an 8-week Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) course which was established in 1979 by Jon Kabat-Zinn.
My favourite book on the subject is called ‘Stress less, accomplish more’ by Emily Fletcher, in which you will learn her unique approach to practising mindfulness every day. As a bonus, she has a very soothing voice which helps when listening to her guided practises that accompany her book.
Openground Mindfulness Training Course Book on (MBSR)
Medical Disclaimer: This article is for information purposes only and is not intended as medical advice. For medical advice always consult your physician. The information provided in this blog is based on the best knowledge of the author at the time of writing and we do not assume liability for the information within this blog, be it direct or indirect, consequential, special, exemplary or other damages.