What is Mindfulness?
Mindfulness is living in the present moment with awareness of whatever is arising without judgement. It is a way of being in wise relationship on an inner and outer level with yourself and with others. It is a way of managing yourself in your life and responding to your life experiences. It is a way of being awake to your life as it unfolds moment by moment with openness and kindness.
Mindfulness is living in the present moment with awareness of whatever is arising without judgement. If we unpack this sentence a little and first of all look at living in the present moment– so much of the time we are living in the past or the future and are not present to NOW. Echart Tolle in this book The Power of Now talks about being a resident in the present and a visitor to the past and future, however, many of us live life the other way around.
And looking at with awareness – awareness is seeing the bigger picture, outside the box, taking the blinkers off and seeing the full vista. With awareness we factor in all the details and insights around a situation and make choices and decisions with these on board.
And whatever is arising – means that we are aware of feelings, sensations and thoughts involved in a situation or experience. We are open to whatever is happening in our body, mind and emotions whether it is positive or challenging. It is the opposite to being detached or in denial.
And finally, without judgement – that we accept whatever is arising in the present moment without labelling the experience as good or bad or as right or wrong. This is very important as so much of the time we judge our experiences in a critical or negative way as thereby create unnecessary stress and anxiety.
The practice of Mindfulness Meditation is a way of cultivating peace and calm in our lives and developing a greater level of acceptance of what is being offered to us in this moment. It is a way to integrate awareness into our daily life. It is a way of living fully in the NOW and finding the gift and joy in each passing moment.
Through the regular practice of mindfulness we develop our ability to experience:
- Reduced stress and to handle anxiety more effectively
- Enhanced clarity, concentration and enthusiasm for life
- The impact our thoughts have on our well being
- The innate joy and peace that resides within all of us.
In the MBSR Programme we use mindfulness meditation, breathing exercises, focused awareness techniques and mindful body movement to develop and cultivate a higher level of self understanding of how we deal with the stresses we meet in our lives.
The Mindfulness Programmes are designed to support you in your everyday life, giving practical ways to improve the quality of each moment. Using the practice of mindfulness meditation allows you to open and embrace the fullness of life. The Programmes are experiential and give a clear and firsthand understanding of how mindfulness enhances the quality of your day to day living. They show you what gives rise to the stresses and difficulties of life and how you can eliminate unnecessary pain and suffering through living in the now.