The concept of mindfulness involves being completely present to the moment and having a deep awareness of our thoughts and emotions. It can have a profound impact on your life and health.
With mental health more present and technology creeping into every aspect of our lives, it’s no surprise we are are often finding themselves distracted and disconnected with our minds, bodies, and lives.
Practicing mindfulness enables you to reduce stress by allowing you to process what you are feeling and thinking the moment a stressor appears in your life. By doing so you are able to engage the “wise mind” to understand how you can resolve the problem.
Visualisation is the act of processing your body's reaction. To counter feeling overwhelmed when faced with a seemingly insurmountable task, try visualising the situation/task and take a moment to analyse how it makes you feel and to process how your body is reacting. Then begin to associate positive emotions to the sensations you are experiencing and monitor how your body feels during the process.
Appreciation is the act of observing the world around you and bringing attention to where you are in your life. When embracing mindfulness, you develop an appreciation for where your life has led. Mindfulness allows you to enjoy the simple pleasures and be fully engaged in your daily activities. It prevents your mind from wandering into the unknown, from worrying about the future, and regretting mistakes from the past.
You can begin by simply taking a walk. Then clear your mind, appreciate your surroundings in all its beauty, channel your ears to hear the sounds around you, feel each step you take and simply observe the world.
Inner locus of control is when you are able to take charge of your inner self. Research by the International Journal of Wellbeing found that individuals who practised mindfulness had a higher internal locus of control which resulted in setting realistic goals and attaining them. Mindfulness equips us with perspective and acknowledging that we will experience obstacles but also equips us with the tools to overcome and achieve. It helps us maintain our motivation and achieve our goals.
Greater emotional health is a byproduct of maintaining a mindfulness practice. Social, or emotional, intelligence is where an individual is able to track and manage their own emotions and those around them. By engaging in mindfulness, it can make you a more compassionate individual, and increase your altruistic behaviour. You become able to tune into other people’s needs and are able to see things from their perspective. A study in 2011, found that individuals who had been practising mindfulness were more inclined to help an individual who required assistance.
Improved sleep health is the last benefit of mindfulness practice that we'll leave you with. It can particularly help those who suffer from sleep disturbances, as Julie Corliss, who writes extensively for Harvard Health, explains. Individuals who had completed a mindfulness-awareness program once a week experienced fewer disturbances in their sleep and reported an improvement in their sleeping habits. It also helps individuals who have overactive minds and have trouble quieting their minds before sleep.
If you’d like to find out more about practising mindfulness and improving your overall health, please reach out to us to ask more or drop by in our London store. Learn about our range of Lifestyle + Wellbeing appointments, or to book a Nutrition consultation click here.