What are the benefits of mindfulness?
Blog » What are the benefits of mindfulness?
“Mindfulness“. Many people have heard this word used across the internet in a variety of contexts. Understandably, the surge in attention and interest this idea has afforded has probably raised some curiosity on your behalf, too. So just what is mindfulness? And where did this notion come from?
The word mindfulness has been used for decades in psychoanalytical literature to refer to a state of cognitive awareness. One research-informed article explains mindfulness as moment-to-moment awareness of experiencing without judgment. In the digital world, conversations about mindfulness may generally also include references to yoga, consciousness, clean eating, or meditation. These disciplines may not be synonymous with mindfulness but instead serve to cultivate mindfulness. Self-regulating practices centered on disciplining one’s attention are the core of mindfulness. Mindfulness is arguably not without its objectives, but some would attest that it is about introspective progress- the journey, not the aim. The benefits of mindfulness, however, are undeniably states of being that help any individual: calmness, clarity, concentration.
In addition to the aforementioned benefits, the following list are also realistic outcomes from practicing mindfulness:
Gains in working memory
Less emotional reactivity
Numerous research articles have run studies on mindfulness and have discovered meditation has been directly related to self-reported positive affect. More interestingly, these results reveal that even short-term commitment show marked differences in the brains of people who practice mindful meditation versus those who do not practice mindful meditation. A study involving people with mindful practice ranging from one month to twenty-nine years were compared to a pool of people who hadn’t meditated. When shown graphic pictures, the former group was better able to disengage from the stimuli and instead focus on a cognitive task versus those who had no practice with mindful meditation.
More insights and explanations from these research studies, along the other uses of mindfulness can be found here: http://www.apa.org/monitor/2012/07-08/ce-corner.aspx
We invite you to practice mindfulness with us as we guide you on your journey to your inner wise self. Join us this January 1st for our “Get Clear on Your Year” retreat.