Mindfulness - Learn to live for the present moment

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Mindfulness

Mindfulness, or the practice of simply being present, is the ability to intentionally pay attention to what is happening in the present moment without judgment, evaluation, or expectation.

Mindfulness is therefore not just about sitting in a meditation session and focusing on the breath. We can perceptively experience any moment of our day.

"If you're depressed, you're living in the past. If you feel anxious, you live in the future. If you feel joy and peace, you are living in the present.” Lao Tzu

Mindfulness originates from the USA, where in the late 1970s it began to be used in a clinical program to reduce stress and treat post-traumatic and depressive states. The main founder of the entire MBSR (Mindfulness-based stress reduction) program is Professor Jon Kabat-Zinn. He wrote a whole book about mindfulness - Život sá pohroma (in the original Full Catastrophe Living), which we can only recommend.

Many other researches and studies [ 1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5 , 6 ] demonstrate and confirm the positive effects of mindfulness. For example, we can name:

  • - Better concentration and memory
  • - Reduction of stress and depressive states
  • - Increase in satisfaction and feeling of happiness
  • - Better sleep
  • - Support of mental and physical health
  • - Support of the immune system
  • - Pain relief
  • - Development of empathy, altruistic and prosocial behavior
  • - Support of creativity and creativity

You will find an abundance of books, lectures, online resources and mobile applications about mindfulness. To begin with, we recommend using guided mindfulness exercises , which will show you what it's really about and guide you through the beginnings.

We recommend trying:

There are many options and types of mindfulness practice. Everyone is comfortable with something different, so try several techniques and choose your own. The great advantage is that you can practice it at any time - in line at the store, while waiting for the bus, while brushing your teeth or even while eating or practicing yoga. It is enough to perceive and fully experience the present moment.

You can easily start right away with the most common breath perception meditation:

  • - Find a quiet place, set a timer for 5-10 min.
  • - Sit comfortably or lie down so that you have a straight back.
  • - Close your eyes and focus on your breath - inhale and exhale, notice how you feel.
  • - When a thought comes to you, ignore it - don't think about it and go back to counting. Remember, it's perfectly normal for thoughts to wander. The important thing is not to judge it in any way and to return to the breath that serves as your anchor to the present.

Mindfulness can be seen as training your mind . Practice it every day and after some time you will observe how it becomes more balanced, calmer, more focused and satisfied. Although it may be hard at first, trust us, once you get into the habit, you won't want to stop .

Resources:

[1] B. Khoury et. al . (2015): Mindfulness-based stress reduction for healthy individuals: A meta-analysis. J Psychosom Res , 78(6):519-28. Link
[2] J. Gu et al. al. (2015): How do mindfulness-based cognitive therapy and mindfulness-based stress reduction improve mental health and well-being? A systematic review and meta-analysis of mediation studies. Clin Psychol Rev, 37:1-12. Link
[3] SB Goldberg et. al. (2018): Mindfulness-based interventions for psychiatric disorders: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Clin Psychol Rev, 59:52-60. Link
[4] Y. Tang et al. and (2015): The neuroscience of mindfulness meditation. Nature Reviews Neuroscience, 16(4), 213-225. Link
[5] A. Chiesa et. atl. (2011): Does mindfulness training improve cognitive abilities? A systematic review of neuropsychological findings. Clin Psychol Rev, 31(3):449-64. Link
[6] BK Hölzel et. al. (2011): Mindfulness practice leads to increases in regional brain gray matter density. Psychiatry Res. 191(1): 36–43. Link

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