Mindfulness is something that I have been interested in for a little while now. I have always taken some benefit to taking 10 or so minutes out of my day for some quiet, meditation or just time to listen to relaxing music. Saying that.. it is harder then you would think to drag yourself away from daily life, so by know means am I an expect in this at all.
Recently however, when I notice myself becoming anxious mindfulness meditation videos are the first thing I have found myself reaching for, whether I am at work, on the tube or trying to get to sleep.
Last week, I decided to book myself onto a 1 day mindfulness course, to try and give my self a better understanding of how it could help. Before I get into this, if I am being honest I wasn’t a huge fan of the course, perhaps because it involved talking to other people or perhaps because I felt I could achieve what I wanted from how I am already incorporating mindfulness into my life. For that reason I won’t mention where I did the course.. because that wouldn’t really be fair and I actually think mindfulness as a practice is really helpful.
Here are some things I did take from the course. These are only my opinions and my reflections so if you think I have it all wrong that’s fine.
1.Mindfulness is a way of retraining the brain to deal with and respond to anxiety and stress in everyday life.
2. Paying attention to how your body feels is important.
3.We shouldn’t try and remove our feelings of anxiety, or pain but rather acknowledge they are there whilst focusing or re-focusing on the physical feelings in our body. this could be breathing, or say the gravity of your feet touching the ground.
4. Everyone experiences this differently, there is no wrong or right way.
5. We should try and think about how helpful our responses to situations are – does it help to get upset, angry? what does that achieve? Why do we feel that way? These aren’t always questions that can be answered, but for me considering them was something I don’t often take the time to do.
Almost a week later, I am 100% happy that I took the course – mainly because it helped my understand some of the science. Whilst I don’t think ill sign up to the full 8 week course for now, it has me interested to pick up a book and explore a but further into eastern philosophies. In addition, I am really going try and use some of the mindfulness techniques more regularly, even if it is just for a few minutes.
Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t but I am giving it a go and I will keep you posted…It starts with something.
Today is the first day of the rest of your life.