There are many ways to consciously focus the mind – meditation, prayer, yoga, chi gung, tai’chi – to name a few. A focused mind can train the brain. The mind and the brain are different. The “mind” can be defined as a process that regulates the flow of energy and information, while "the brain" is the top of the nervous system.* Through the consistent practice of Mindfulness we learn to attune to ourselves and to others with more coherence and acceptance. By focusing our attention in the here-and-now, we start to grasp the transitory nature of our thoughts, feelings and body sensations, becoming more aware of how they are always changing. With guidance you can learn how to practice a form of mindfulness meditation that will benefit you in your daily life.
How can Mindfulness Training help me?
Recent brain research has demonstrated that mindfulness practice:
- Increases emotional self-regulation
- Decreases stress reactivity
- Reduces subjective states of suffering
- Improves patterns of thinking
- Reduces negative mindsets, like self-criticism
- Increases a sense of physical well-being
- Improves immune functioning
- Accelerates healing
- Nurtures interpersonal relationships
Our technologically driven culture rewards multi-tasking and over-stimulation of all the senses. We can easily lose touch with meaning and purpose just trying to keep up. We have fewer and fewer opportunities to make the connections with our inner selves and with others that are needed for our continued inner growth and development.
When we practice paying attention on purpose with the qualities of curiosity, openness, acceptance and lovingkindness, we begin to understand and let go of old negative patterns in our brains and become motivated to create healthier patterns and states of mind.
Mindfulness meditation takes lots of practice! The more we practice the more benefits we receive. Because it is not easy to practice at first without some guidance, my introductory CD can assist you in practicing mindfulness meditation and visualizations for relaxing the body and quieting the mind on your own at home. The CD insert includes questions for your reflection as well as art therapy exercises to deepen your experience of each section. The CD is designed for individuals as well as groups.
CD - Being Well; guided meditation and visualization to enhance well-being.
Click here for a sample of my CD:
- Introduction (1:42)
- Concentration Meditation (12:11)
- Belly-Breathing and Visualization for Stress Reduction (10:57)
- Safe Place and Inner Advisor (12:32)
- Enhancing Physical, Emotional and Mental Well-Being (22:58)
- Recycling the Inner Trash (13:53)
CD Includes suggestions for art-making and questions for self-reflection.
- The Wise Heart by Jack Kornfield, PhD
- Coming to Our Senses: Healing ourselves and the world through mindfulness by Jon Kabat-Zinn, PhD
- Cultivating Lasting Happiness, A 7-step guidee to mindfulness by Terry Fralich, LCPC
- The Mindful Brain by Dan Siegel, M.D.
Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Classes are offered by many San Francisco Bay Area hospital community programs.
Please contact me to learn more about how mindfulness practice might benefit you and to purchase CDs.