What is Mindfulness And What Are Its Benefits?
Extensive scientific evidence shows the benefits of everyday mindfulness to one’s overall health. This can be the health of your home environment, at school and in the workplace. Mindfulness means paying attention “on purpose, in the present moment, and nonjudgmentally” (Kabat-Zinn, 1994, p. 4). In other words, to be mindful is to pay close attention to your present moment. Mindfulness is a practice, and an attitude that anybody can learn quickly. It can change your relationship to the world around you.
A a Mindfulness Coach, I help not only teach people about the benefits of mindfulness, but help them implement the strategies and shift their mindset.
Can Mindfulness Help Me Gain Momentum?
Paying attention to your thoughts and being present exposes you to less anxiety and pain. One of the key benefits to mindfulness in everyday life is it can help you gain momentum. There’s a common misconception that slowing down your thoughts, or taking a moment to pause, will cause them to lose momentum. The research on the benefits of everyday mindfulness suggests the opposite is true. In fact, Vedic meditation is one such technique that proven to bring you right into the moment. Learning to meditate is effortless, and practicing the skill doesn’t take that long to do either. It only takes 20-minutes and you’ve slowed down enough to experience the benefits in your body and mind. In fact, Florence R. Gaia, RN, M.Ed., encourages you to do your meditation in the back seat of your car!
What if I don’t have time to practice mindfulness?
The first thing to learn when being present is you become acutely aware of the thinking you’re doing. It can happen while driving in your car or while cooking, and brushing your teeth. There’s an apparent understanding of one self – another great benefit of everyday mindfulness.
Be aware that if you have different expectations of your ‘mindfulness practice’ results, you may move away from consistently practicing it. It’s important to free yourself from the constraints of your mind, even for a few moments every day. This helps you to reap the valuable stress-management benefits you can feel. If you struggle with fitting this into your routine, consider this podcast episode on deconstructing routines.
What is the research on the benefits of mindfulness?
Are you looking for research and resources on the benefits of everyday mindfulness? Here’s a rather a brief discussion to help you understand the impact of this work? Share this research page with everyone you know – be it your administrator, child’s school principal, teachers, or peers to help make the case for building a mindfulness practice in your area. The research I linked up to involves promoting the research on teaching the benefits of mindfulness in schools.
The benefits of everyday mindfulness, include improved attention, emotional regulation , greater compassion, reduced overall stress and improvement in applying strategies learned, and reduction in anxiety. Much of the scientific research on meditation shows similar results. This includes, but not limited to, the activation of the prefrontal cortex, which helps with emotional regulation and executive cognitive function.
How Can Coaching Help Me Build Everyday Happiness?
I discussed this in the Facebook Live, Strategy Talk With Coaching Lynn one day. Ultimately, I love to teach my coaching clients some mindfulness strategies. Becoming aware provides great benefits in terms of our own personal well-being, sense of ease and presence in the world. I like to demystify how easy it is. Living in the present can even sharpen your brain to getting the answers you need in a moment’s notice.
As I said earlier, if you’re taking a program like The Pro-mind Experience, either individually, or as part of a workplace initiative, you learn many advanced mindfulness strategies that enable you to gain awareness of your body, your thoughts, your emotions, your habits, your daily routines, your beliefs and your overall life.
The program goal is to feel empowered by your inner-self through recognizing your needs. Feeling your emotions instead of thinking helps you connect with your values and your inner-strengths. …and not the traditional strengths either. In that program, I’m constantly striving to get you healthier and feeling more in control of your time. All of this provides the outcome of proper stress-management.
What If I Can’t Take The ProMind Experience – How Can I Learn?
If you can’t join us inside the experiential program, and unable to have a one-on-one call with me, you can spend a few moments a day in a new powerful habit: contemplation. I like to use a journal and it’s my “fantasy diary”. You can have a great opening and awakening by journaling your future desired journey, through this contemplation. In this moment, there’s a purpose and that’s to envision what you desire. You’re in the moment at that time.
Aside from journaling, you can add some questions for yourself in your daytime, to prompt you at certain times. Ultimately, the end result is to train yourself to be more aware of the thoughts that are passing through your mind. If your thoughts veer towards past regrets, hopes and fears, you will have enough self-awareness to shift them to what you want to be thinking about instead. This way, you can manage your emotions, your thoughts, and your behaviours. This self-empowerment enables you to achieve your goals and grow. That’s because you have more confidence, and you can recognize your successes.
Learning these skills can have profound effects on your family, your friendships, and your workplace. This provides you the vehicle to your mind and your thoughts – a profound benefit to mindfulness. That awareness is catalyst you need to develop better self-awareness. And that cycle can further enhance your self-confidence and emotional intelligence – an in the end, crushing the negative effects of stress.
Mindfulness Can Benefit Any Household, School or Workplace.
Personal growth and learning are one of the most basic universal human needs. Mindfulness, and going inward, can help you feel a level personal importance. If you think about it, every musician has to fine tune their instrument right? The same rule applies to us, and our own “instruments” – our Minds – and learning how to pay attention and be mindful of our thoughts, and our bodies. Once you can learn some basic principles, mindfulness training can reduce your stress as well as reversing the negative effects on the body and certain parts of the brain.
In this instance I’m talking about the PFC (pre-frontal cortex), the brain’s top executive. The PFC is also involved in working memory, and emotional regulation. These are the circuits that are actually involved in emotional regulation, and they also interact with those that are associated with the Prefrontal cortex which manages planning, judgement, and decision-making.
This means, once you have stress in the body, you release adrenaline and norepinephrine which pinches off the PFC from working effectively. Mindfulness helps the PFC to be in a state of calm.
How Can Mindfulness Benefit Me & My Stress Levels?
That stress response can negatively influence learning and behaviour, particularly in children/adolescents who still have growing brains and need to sustain attention for longer periods of time at school.Children and adolescents need effective self-regulation tools. When feelings are not managed very well, our thinking and concentration is impaired.
Having a regular mindfulness practice can also help you be more focused and more compassionate with yourself. Mindfulness can calm the non-stop mind chatter and agitation that we experience. Our attention span is not separate from our emotions so having a thought can arouse a negative emotional state. Research suggests that our emotional state significantly affects the quality of our attention. Knowing this can be of great benefit to parents raising young children – the future generation. If parents can learn mindful awareness first, and bring the strategies into the home, they’re giving their entire family a range of practices to empower them inwardly and outwardly.
In essence, learning to apply mindfulness strategies helps us recognize our personal experiences, at that very moment. You’re learning to be in the moment with your experiences. This in turn helps us develop self-compassion, enabling everyone to make wiser choices to respond more appropriately to difficult situations. You learn not to react so strongly or react in such aggressive or self-destructive ways…towards yourself or your children.
This takes time and a system, however.
And that’s what I aim to do in The Pro-Mind Experience, allowing you to learn about your emotions and the difference between your emotions and how you experience them, to avoid the negative impact (drugs, alcohol abuse, depression, anxiety). If one can recognize their thoughts are just thoughts, innocent travelers passing through, than you can learn to choose to engage in the experience of that thought or not. This can be empowering for virtually everyone – especially kids/adolescents.
In Satori’s top 5 strategies for peak emotional performance, I talk about being aware of how you’re feeling and what you’re thinking about so that you can shift the thoughts and move along with better thoughts.
Thus, self-awareness = self-regulation!