Mindfulness: What Is It & How Is It Practiced?

Mindfulness: What Is It & How Is It Practiced?

Often, daily occupations and the accelerated pace of life prevent us from living fully in the present, which is why one is looking for a new lifestyle that allows one to experience emotional and mental well-being. One of the best-known practices to consciously pay attention to the present is mindfulness.

Practicing mindfulness helps you live in the here and now, without worrying about the past or the future.

Mindfulness is considered a philosophy of life because it is a transformation of habits and actions from the inside out, i. e., from the mind to what we manage to execute. With this type of practice and type of meditation, stability and well-being are achieved, since everyday life often submerges us in stress.

But what is mindfulness about? How can we practice it? Is it related to meditation? I share concepts, information, techniques, and recommendations on the Buddhist practice of mindfulness.


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Mindfulness What Is It? What Is It About?

To understand mindfulness, what it is, and how it is practiced, it is necessary to know that, in addition to having Buddhist foundations, it is considered a philosophy of life to learn to live in the here and now.

Mindfulness is a practice that seeks to manage emotions and transform thoughts. In this way, if something hurts you, you can change it to regain mental and emotional well-being.

    Mindfulness allows us to recognize what is happening in the present, consciously accepting the flow of experience

The word mindfulness means full attention or full awareness, so its practice is nothing more than paying attention and concentrating on the present moment. Although it is not necessary to meditate to practice mindfulness, its principles allow us to develop meditative skills to achieve a state of full attention to the world around us.

Through breathing and mindfulness, we can achieve a state of deep awareness, in which we gain peace of mind to think without making judgments about our actions, feelings, or thoughts. With this, we learn to handle each situation with the seriousness that we go through and thus have a positive attitude towards life.

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Main Goals Of Mindfulness

The main objective of mindfulness is to ensure that everyday situations do not affect you, that your emotions do not play tricks on you, that you can make the best decisions at all times and that your mind stops manufacturing thoughts that do not lead you to anything good.

With mindfulness, we manage to separate ourselves from our thoughts in order to analyze and recognize them. Thus understanding the importance of the here and now, total attention is a moment to the present.

Mindfulness is a very useful practice to treat psychological problems such as anxiety, depression, and stress

With this practice originating in the East, it is sought that people learn to live unconcerned about the future and detached from the negative things of the past. This includes resentment, sadness, bitterness, feelings that we keep for various reasons throughout life.

How is Mindfulness Practiced?

If you want to learn how to practice mindfulness, it is essential that you know how to control your breathing, since it is medically proven that during tense situations, if we breathe deeply, the muscles will relax and the anxiety will decrease. In addition, this practice is based on focusing on the present and analyzing situations in a neutral way, without making judgments or having concerns.

To practice mindfulness, you do not need a specific schedule or move somewhere. As it is a relaxation practice, just spending about 30 minutes in your home, it must be an intimate, quiet moment, where you are concentrated and without interruptions.

To start in this practice, it is recommended:
- Do shorter sessions and dynamic guided meditation exercises so that, over time, the mind adapts to the new mental states.
- Practice it in a comfortable and quiet space, during free time, without ties.
- Put aside mobile devices that can interrupt or interfere with mindfulness meditation.

This technique, mindfulness, help us combat stress and deal with pain, sadness, and negative thoughts. To practice mindfulness, just follow these steps:

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1. Find a comfortable and quiet place

The practice of mindfulness seeks tranquility and psycho-emotional well-being, therefore, to do it you must place yourself in a comfortable place, that you like and that allows you to feel at ease. When you have it, it will be easier to execute the meditation.

It is important that there are no distracting objects or noise in this place. A space with vegetation and nature is valid, such as the garden, you can also look for a quiet corner of your house, as long as it is a space without interruptions.

2. Correct position

To practice mindfulness or any other meditation and relaxation technique, you need to be in a comfortable and upright position. It is usual that you do it in the lotus position, but it is also valid to sit slightly with your back straight.

Mindfulness is practiced sitting or lying down and, although it can be on a sofa or in bed, it is better on the floor, so you get used to taking a correct meditation position.

If you are starting to meditate it will be a bit difficult to get used to the straight position. To make you feel more comfortable you can sit on a small cushion or a mattress.

3. Control your breathing

Control over-breathing is key in all meditation because through it we achieve a good level of concentration, which allows us to better connect with our inner self in each mindfulness session.

To start this practice, it is important that you do breathing exercises so that you can adapt more easily to deep breathing.

Inhale and exhale deeply several times, for about 10 minutes. Deep breathing allows you to focus your attention on something specific, avoiding the thoughts that usually interrupt our intimate connection. It also helps to oxygenate the body and, in this way, immerse yourself in a state of relaxation that will fill you with benefits on an emotional, mental and physical level.

4. Analyze your body

In mindfulness, sensations are very important because they allow us to connect with our being. Therefore, the next phase is to close your eyes and direct your attention to what your body feels, such as your heartbeat, involuntary movements, etc. Dedicate yourself to experiencing everything that you overlook on a daily basis.

Thus, the attention is directed to simple stimuli and not to the thoughts that generate stress, restlessness, or anxiety. If you want you can add massages in certain parts of the body, feet, arms, neck.

5. Broaden the focus

Mindfulness seeks us to analyze our own thoughts with an objective perspective, i. e., without making judgments or assessments that affect us emotionally and psychologically.

To do this, you must direct your focus of attention to the experiences you have lived, think of each of them as if they were not yours. Analyze them so that you can accept them and learn to act before each one of them.

Dedicate considerable time to each experience according to its importance, little by little, you will learn to accept it and face it. If you need to forgive, overcome and improve some aspect of your life, you can do it with practice, this is essential in mindfulness.

Once you do this little exercise and analysis, go back to deep breathing for another 10 minutes and close the session.

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Mindfulness Techniques To Start

The best way to start mindfulness is with a guided meditation, i. e., with the help of extra resources. You can support yourself by reading a book, audiobooks, or videos that tell you how to practice mindfulness, deep breathing, and any relaxation technique related to this lifestyle.

So that you practice, I share these mindfulness techniques. Pay attention!

A minute of mindfulness

To get started in this relaxing practice, it is good that you make short and easy sessions, this will help you to adapt and concentrate better over time. This exercise will allow you to advance in learning mindfulness.

The ideal is to do a short meditation, one minute, every day and add one minute to the session each day. That is, the first day one minute, the second day two minutes, and so on until you reach about 30 minutes a day, which is indicated for full sessions.

The good thing about this technique is that you can practice it, at first, anywhere, and at any time, while you adapt to the 30 minutes a day that should be part of your habits.

Body scanner

The body scanner is an exercise to connect with our body. It allows us to give rise to acceptance and self-love, without judging or rejecting what we are and feel.

It is a mindfulness technique that teaches us to accept ourselves with virtues and defects, as it is the only way to heal our mind and spirit.

To perform this exercise you must:
- Sit in a comfortable position, with your back straight, or lie down to adopt the lying position.
- Then, close your eyes, take a deep breath and focus your attention on your breath.
- Take a mental tour of your entire body, from head to toe, paying close attention to each sensation.

Landing here and now

When you want to get out of the routine, do this exercise. It is about focusing attention on the present, through deep breathing, so you let the thoughts, memories, and ideas that burden you and stress you flow.

This exercise is only achieved by focusing attention on the breath, with deep inhalations and exhalations. It is likely that you get distracted by some image that came to your mind, in that case, let it flow and then return your attention to the breath.

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Benefits Of Practicing Mindfulness

Mindfulness practice seeks for people to live with calm, acceptance, and more love. It helps us to live enjoying the present, without being slaves of the past, nor fearing the future. But, beyond this philosophy, there are many mental and physical benefits of practicing mindfulness.

- Control stress and anxiety: All relaxation and deep breathing activities serve to control stress and anxiety, either in specific situations or as a problem of everyday life. Mindfulness lowers cortisol levels, a hormone that is released in response to stress. In addition, with this type of meditation, you achieve a state of calm and serenity, which favors physical and emotional health.
- Combat insomnia: Thanks to the state of relaxation and tranquility that is achieved with mindfulness, it is possible to combat insomnia and recover the quality of sleep. That is why it is recommended to meditate before sleeping.
- Protects the brain: Experts say that meditation and mindfulness can modify the neural structure of the brain. It is possible that the size of telomeres increases, structures located at the ends of chromosomes that are directly related to aging.
- Train the mind: Mindfulness is a practice that trains attention, concentration, creativity, and memory. With it, it is possible to keep the mind in good working order.
- Develops emotional intelligence: With the help of mindfulness we learn to show ourselves as we are, this improves self-awareness and allows us to transform ourselves, love ourselves and have compassion for ourselves to decide what affects us and what does not.
- Improves the relationship with others: The mindfulness philosophy is based on compassion, love, and acceptance with ourselves, because only by putting these values ​​into practice do we find peace of mind and we can better relate to the environment and those around us.

Mindfulness is, without a doubt, a practice of help and transformation that leads us to emotional, mental, and physical well-being. If you are a person with stress or anxiety, including some meditation exercises can be very helpful.

Health and peace in our mind are as important as that of the body, so it deserves the same attention and care.

Dare to get started in mindfulness and live the present moment!


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