What’s all the fuss about mindfulness?
by Laura Harrington on Mar 07, 2023
Mindfulness is a state of being present and engaged in the current moment, without judgment. It's a simple yet powerful practice that can have a profound impact on both mental and physical wellbeing.
The term mindfulness has gained popularity in recent years, and for good reason. There is a growing body of research that suggests mindfulness can help to reduce stress, improve focus, boost the immune system, and even lower blood pressure. Practicing mindfulness can also help to support emotional regulation, promote self-awareness, and increase resilience.
Here are two of the benefits of mindfulness:
1) Reduces stress
Mindfulness can help to reduce stress by decreasing the activity in the amygdala, the part of the brain responsible for the fight or flight response. When we're in a constant state of stress, the amygdala is in overdrive, and this can lead to a host of physical and mental health problems. By practicing mindfulness, we can help to reduce the activity in the amygdala, which in turn can help to reduce stress and improve overall wellbeing.
2) Increases self-awareness
Another reason mindfulness is so beneficial is that it can help to increase our self-awareness. When we're mindful, we're able to observe our thoughts, emotions, and bodily sensations without judgment. Through this, we gain a deeper understanding of ourselves and our patterns of thought and behaviour.
How can we practice mindfulness?
One of the easiest ways to practice mindfulness is through meditation. Sit comfortably and focus your attention on your breath. When your mind wanders, simply notice where it went and gently bring your attention back to your breath. You can also practice mindfulness through mindful movement, such as yoga or tai chi. Engaging in activities such as journaling, cooking, or even going for a walk can also be a great way to practice mindfulness.
Another way to practice mindfulness is to incorporate it into your daily life. You can be mindful while eating, by paying attention to the flavours and textures of your food, or while walking by paying attention to the sensation of your feet hitting the ground.
The bottom line
Mindfulness is an important practice that can have a profound impact on both mental and physical wellbeing, all through meditation, mindful movement, and incorporating it into your daily life. Remember that mindfulness takes practice and patience, but with time and consistent effort, it can become a natural part of your daily routine.