Mindfulness meditation is derived from Vipassana- a Budhist/eastern way of meditating. Its an old practice followed for more than last 2500 years. Mindfulness meditation was popularised in western countries by Harvard Professor John Kabat-Zinn.
So what is mindfulness?
Mindfulness is the basic human ability to be fully present, aware of where we are and what we’re doing, and not overly reactive or overwhelmed by what’s going on around us. Its just being an observer of whatever is happening, even observing our thoughts as they appear or disappear.
Whenever you bring awareness to what you’re directly experiencing via your senses, or to your state of mind via your thoughts and emotions, you’re being mindful. And there’s growing research showing that when you train your brain to be mindful, it improves your mental and physical health tremendously.
Mindfulness meditation practice is proven to provide great health benefits including stress reduction, sleep management, improvement is focus & creativity, managing pain etc. Its a simple meditation practice which could also be learnt online using guided meditation programs.
Why breath meditation?
This meditation focuses on the breath, not because there is anything special about it, but because the physical sensation of breathing is always there and you can use it as an anchor to the present moment. Throughout the practice you may find yourself caught up in thoughts, emotions, sounds—wherever your mind goes, simply come back again to the next breath. Even if you only come back once, that’s okay.
What are the other forms of mindfulness meditation?
Apart from being aware of your breath, one could try being mindful of sounds, thoughts, feeling, and body sensations. The main idea is to pickup one aspect of life and focus on it during meditation. Disciplined practice of focus meditation will soon evolve into mindfulness of present moment. A broad consciousness covering all present movements will appear with this practice.
In Elate Wellbeing's beginners- mindfulness meditation program for 3 and 6 months, we will share practices on breath meditation which will be core focus of this program. Towards the end of this program we shall also briefly introduce mindfulness practices on body sensation, thoughts, sound etc.
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