Mindfulness is the practice of being present in each moment and paying conscious attention to what is actually happening, rather than being lost in our heads.
Some of the Many Benefits of Mindfulness Practice
- Reduces Stress
- Improves Focus
- Improves body awareness
- Reduces anger and other emotional reactivity
- Increases compassion and empathy
- Improves immune function
- Helps with pain management
- Improves memory
- Improves adaptability
Books – There are so many books to choose from – These are some of my favorites
Jon Kabat-Zinn. Originally published in 1994, the book that moved mindfulness practice from a religious context to mainstream. Although Kabat-Zinn has written lots of other books, this book has all the basics. Kabat-Zinn is the executive director of the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care and Society at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center. He is the founder and former director of the UMMC Stress Reduction Clinic and an associate professor of medicine in the division of preventive and behavioral medicine. Using mindfulness meditation, Kabat-Zinn works to help people reduce stress and deal with chronic pain, and a variety of illnesses, particularly breast cancer.
Jon Kabat-Zinn. Once you’ve read Wherever You go There You Are, or have a beginning practice, this book can be used as part of a daily reminder. Each short chapter focuses on a different aspect of mindfulness and can be read quickly.
Thich Nhat Hanh. A book on mindfulness practices for children, using the analogy of a seed and garden to talk about nurturing the practice
The Science of Mindfulness, Dan Siegel. An on-line article with a good overview of the science of mindfulness.
- Heart-Math Institute. The mission of Heart Math is to help establish heart-based living and global coherence by inspiring people to connect with the intelligence and guidance of their own hearts. The website posts research, articles, and Free Tools for Well Being, including specific tools for children and young adults. Lots of information at this website.
- UCLA Mindfulness Research Center. Free guided meditations provided by the UCLA Mindfulness site.