Mindfulness

'In this moment, there is plenty of time. In this moment, you are precisely as you should be. In this moment, there is infinite possibility’ Victoria Moran

"Meditation practice isn't about trying to throw ourselves away and become something better. It's about befriending who we are already."

                                       Pema Chödrön

Mindfulness

 

Many of us already have the skills used during Mindfulness, these skills can be developed further through guidance and practice. Mindfulness practice can help us to learn to live more in the present moment, find different ways to respond to difficult experiences, improving our overall well being and family life.

When we choose to be mindful, we are becoming aware of what’s going on in our body, gently noticing our thoughts and feelings and what’s going on around us. We become more aware of how our and other's responses affect our interactions and relationships and recognise the way external factors can impact on our experiences. It can create space, allowing us to respond instead of react in difficult situations.

We can sometimes get caught up in negative thinking- dwelling on the past or worrying about the future, which can affect our mood. Mindfulness can help us redirect or change these negative thinking patterns.

Mindfulness can be practiced using meditation, guided by a teacher or audio but it can also be easily carried out informally during day to day tasks. It can be useful to experiment and reflect on what methods suit you best, when to practice, for how long and which meditations you relate to at different times. 

Like any skill, we improve the more we practice, the more we dwell on negative thoughts the better we will get at doing that, however the more we practice mindfulness skills the more naturally they will come to us during times of stress.

Compassion

 

At Mindfully Connected we incorporate elements of compassion alongside mindfulness throughout all of our sessions. 

 

Life doesn’t always go smoothly, and at times, things can be tough. It may feel easier to be kind to other people, but we may not be very good at looking after ourselves, particularly when we are feeling hurt, stressed, tired or emotional. Bringing compassion to ourselves is about setting limits and recognising and taking care of our needs. It’s about accepting yourself for who you are, the positives and negatives and motivating our self with encouragement instead of criticism.

There are two different elements of compassion. The first involves bringing understanding to our own and other's misfortune and the second involves alleviating and preventing suffering. A combination of mindfulness and compassion can help to foster these skills and attributes and can be an effective method to really get to know your inner self. It can help people acknowledge, tolerate, and deal with difficult emotions such as sadness, loss, disappointment, confusion, anger and fear in healthier ways. By using particular practices individuals can be supported to cultivate understanding and move past difficult emotions. Gently noticing, not avoiding, fighting or pushing away difficult feelings and instead responding with kindness to themselves and others. 

Evidence shows that practicing mindfulness and compassion can lead to positive physical and mental health outcomes, improving resilience and the ability to manage stress. It can help us to develop inner strength, insight and courage. It has positive effects on the way we relate to our experiences, helping us to feel more content and supports us to develop positive relationships, deepening our connections with others.

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