What is Mindfulness?
Have you ever started eating a snack bar, taken a couple of bites, then noticed all you had left was an empty packet in your hand? Or been driving somewhere and arrived at your destination only to realise you remember nothing about your journey? Most people have! These are common examples of "mindlessness," or "going on automatic pilot." In our modern, busy lives, we constantly multi task. It's easy to lose awareness of the present moment when we become lost in our efforts to juggle work, home, finances, and other conflicting demands.
As humans we are often "not present" in our own lives. We often fail to notice the good things about our lives, fail to hear what our bodies are telling us, or poison ourselves with toxic self criticism.
Human minds are easily distracted, habitually examining past events and trying to anticipate the future. Becoming more aware of our thoughts, feelings and sensations may not sound like an obviously helpful thing to do, however learning to do this in a way that suspends judgement and self-criticism can have an incredibly positive impact on our lives.
Mindfulness is a way of paying attention to, and seeing clearly whatever is happening in our lives. It will not eliminate life's pressures, but it can help us respond to them in a calmer manner that benefits our heart, head, and body. It helps us recognise and step away from habitual, often unconscious emotional and physiological reactions to everyday events. It provides us with a scientifically researched approach to cultivating clarity, insight, and understanding. Practicing mindfulness allows us to be fully present in our life and work, and improve our quality of life.
The benefits of Mindfulness include
Helping individuals to:
Recognise, slow down or stop automatic and habitual reactions.
Respond more effectively to complex or difficult situations.
See situations more clearly
Become more creative
Achieve balance and resilience at work and at home
The ABC of Mindfulness
A is for awareness - Becoming more aware of what you are thinking and doing - whats going on in your mind and body.
B is for "just Being" with your experience. Avoiding the tendency to respond on auto-pilot and feed problems by creating your own story.
C is for seeing things and responding more wisely. By creating a gap between the experience and our reaction to, we can make wiser choices.
About John Brady
I have had a life long interest in meditation, spiritual and psychological development but it was not until 1997 that I decided to explore meditation in a more formal setting. I studied mindfulness and loving kindness meditation with the Friends of the Western Buddhist Order while I lived in Dublin. After much practice and study I began teaching in a variety of settings in 2001.
Mindfulness is a way of paying attention in the present moment, to yourself, others and the world around you. It is a skill that you can train in, using techniques like meditation and yoga. Research shows that people who practice meditation and yoga are more aware of their thoughts and emotions and better able to manage them. Mindfulness training boosts your attention and concentration, raises your level of emotional intelligence, increases your resilience and improves your relationships.
My wish for you is that as you apply this skill you develop a form of mental and emotional hygiene that enriches your life, provides you with a grounded clarity which enables your essential nature to unfold as you begin to realise your true potential.
Mindfulness Meditation - 5 week foundation course
Sat 23rd May - Sat 20th June
12.30pm - 2.30pm
Flow Studio, 51 Malone Rd, Queens Quarter, Belfast.
Flow Studio 'Monthly Unlimited' Members £55
To enroll please contact John on: 07895 548333