What is Mindfulness and How Can Mindfulness Help Me ?
August 22, 2016
Mindfulness is a moment-to-moment awareness of one’s experience without judgment. We explain it simply in “Mindfulness in Plain English and How to Practice Mindfulness” so in this article we’ll focus on what benefits mindfulness can bring into your life, summarising what a myriad of studies have demonstrated. People who practice mindful meditation, when compared with those who don’t, show:
- Reduced rumination. So in plain speak this means your brain is less noisy and full of chatter and thoughts.
- Less emotional reactivity – more ability to stay centered and focused.
- Improved working memory. This enables focus and sustained attention during cognitive performance tasks.
- Increased cognitive flexibility. This is related to creativity and problem solving.
- Faster information processing (fewer unrelated thoughts to distract) and reduced task effort.
- Fewer depressive symptoms, reduced anxiety, and reduced stress.
- Increased positive affect and decreased negative affect such as anger.
- Higher relationship satisfaction. Mindfulness practitioners are better able to deal with conflict and stress, which is a reliable predictor of relationship satisfaction.
- Enhanced self-insight and intuition.
- Improved immune functioning and feelings of well-being.
- Increased empathy and self-compassion. Two components of mindfulness – nonjudging and nonreacting – are closely positively correlated with both.
- Less fatigue.
With such a long list of benefits, practicing mindfulness daily is a no-brainer. Whether you struggle with stress, or you’re wanting to enhance your capacities such as calmness, clarity and concentration, mindfulness can help.
Davis, D. and Hayes, J. (2011). What are the benefits of mindfulness? A practice review of psychotherapy-related research. Psychotherapy, 48(2), pp.198-208.