Mindfulness Practice

It is a key ingredient to effective counseling and provides greater psychological flexibility.

A Heightened State of Awareness

Mindfulness hardly needs an explanation these days given the explosion of meditation apps and the regular use of this term in modern psychotherapy and counseling. It is a key ingredient to effective counseling and provides greater psychological flexibility.

At its origin, mindfulness comes from Buddhist meditation practices such as Vipassana that grow a heightened state of sensory awareness through body scanning and the space to observe activity of the mind and body. (Though mindfulness has roots in Buddhism, it is not a religious practice, and you do not need to be Buddhist to do it.)

A Heightened State of Awareness

Mindfulness hardly needs an explanation these days given the explosion of meditation apps and the regular use of this term in modern psychotherapy and counseling. It is a key ingredient to effective counseling and provides greater psychological flexibility. It is a key ingredient to effective counseling and provides greater psychological flexibility.

At its origin, mindfulness comes from Buddhist meditation practices such as Vipassana that grow a heightened state of sensory awareness through body scanning and the space to observe activity of the mind and body. (Though mindfulness has roots in Buddhism, it is not a religious practice, and you do not need to be Buddhist to do it.)

In therapy sessions...

What this may look like is reserving some time in sessions to meditate together for 10 minutes and reflect on where there was difficulty and what was experienced.

It may also be more interesting for the client to do a daily practice of meditation at home, and report their findings at each session. The therapy room can be a place to reflect on what they noticed and review for needed adjustments or alternative mindfulness practices.

If I were to describe the greatest benefit I found with mindfulness, it was the ability to see my thoughts as innocent and harmless. They happen rapidly, constantly and relentlessly.

They are made up of fears based on past experiences or a desired avoidance of pain and disaster. Sometimes they are loud and critical. Sometimes they are restless and bored. Sometimes they want to obsess on the past or undue things that have already happened or draw other paths or decisions I should or could have taken.

The mind is active and interested in our full attention. With meditation and other mindfulness practices, we develop the skill to observe with more distance and eventually greater friendliness and awe. We may feel less swept down stream by the river of our thoughts or physical sensations such as muscle and bone aches and pains.

With meditation and other mindfulness practices, we develop the skill to observe with more distance and eventually greater friendliness and awe.

Besides meditation, mindfulness can be the act of slowing down to taste every flavor and texture when you eat, walking or commuting with attention to your breath and the weight of your body on the earth or seat.

A mindfulness focal point could even be to notice full and presently when you are bathing or taking a shower, to pause intermittently from the day’s to do list and enjoy the sensation of warm water and smell of soap. Mindfulness can sound profoundly simplistic, but it is a challenging practice to upkeep and make room for.

Most of us have been taught to navigate life with our thinking mind, and being whole heartedly present and observant and still and present do not seem to be strongly coded DNA. For this reason, mindfulness results are largely dependent on daily consistency.

In summary, mindfulness achieves acceptance of the present moment with a view of thoughts and emotions as regularly changing weather patterns; constant and temporary. People describe benefits of this practice such as greater emotional regulation and a sharpness of mind. All of the therapists at FOCUS PEC have a mindfulness practice that is integrated in how they approach psychology.

Sarah’s methodology was flexible and focused on what would achieve the best outcome for me, which encouraged and maximised my development. Principally I learnt what factors influence my behaviour and techniques for minimising behaviours that negatively affect my life.

For me specifically, I have become a much calmer, more optimistic and happier person. With Sarah’s help, I made key discoveries that gave me a greater understanding of who I am.

- Name Withheld -

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