Mindfulness is the practice of being in the present moment instead of lost in the worries of our minds. As humans with brains that are highly evolved for problem solving, so much of our time is spent worrying about the future or ruminating about the past. Although some degree of planning is a necessary part of life, most of the things we worry about do not actually occur. On the same note, although learning from mistakes in the past is necessary for personal growth, staying stuck in our shame is not productive or beneficial. All of that worry and regret leaves us feeling tense, stressed and unsure of ourselves. Mindfulness can help to pull you out of this rut. Additionally, mindful self compassion is a specific form of mindfulness that focuses on evoking kindness towards ourselves, especially when we’re experiencing painful emotions. Our practitioners can teach you tools, techniques and “ways of being” from the mindfulness tradition that can help you to clear your mind and tap into the beauty of the present moment and all that is unfolding around you. Many of these tools use your own sensory experience as a grounding force so they are easy to learn and accessible no matter where you are.
Meditation is one way to cultivate mindfulness by choosing a focal point for the mind to practice and develop discipline for what we allow ourselves to focus on. Our brain is like a muscle in that it strengthens the areas we use the most. For instance, if you play an instrument , the areas of your brain that are dedicated to the somatosensory cortex, and particularly the areas associated with touch and hearing, will be highly innervated and developed as compared to the rest of the brain. This works in our favor with meditation, as we cultivate the ability to direct our attention towards healthy and nourishing ways of being. If we focus on our breath to clear our mind, then our ability to clear our mind during stressful times is improved. If we focus on positive intentions that encompass goodwill towards ourselves and others, then our ability to be compassionate and loving during difficult times improves. There are many ways to practice meditation. Our practitioners can assess your preferences and experience level to find a meditation practice that is individually suited to you.
Mindfulness is provided by: