Mindfulness has moved from a concept dating back to 2,600 years ago to an impactful stress and anxiety relief practice that’s gained popularity in the past decade. While it was initially thought to be a New Age theory, mindfulness is now a science-based method to boost positive mental health.
Research has discovered that mindfulness techniques can help relieve stress, alleviate depression, improve sleep, treat heart disease, lower blood pressure, reduce chronic pain, ease gastrointestinal problems, and much more.
Mindfulness is a moment-to-moment understanding of an individual’s experience without bias or prejudice. The goal is to achieve a state of awareness and focused relaxation by paying close attention to thoughts, sensations, and emotions. By tapping into these senses, mindfulness refocuses the mind to stay in the present moment.
Mindfulness can be practiced through a variety of techniques — and they’re not all equally effective for everyone. While some may be able to anchor through meditation, others may need movement like yoga. Keep reading to learn about different ways to practice mindfulness.
Mindfulness Techniques For Anxiety & Depression
Meditation brings together a handful of mindfulness techniques that, when practiced consistently, relieves stress and anxiety.
It’s possible to find a sense of peace, calm, and balance through meditation. This can positively affect your emotional, psychological, and physical well-being. A bonus: meditation has a lasting effect that benefits you throughout the day — keeping you calm when faced with typical everyday stressors.
How To Practice Meditation
Sit comfortably and quietly while focusing on your breathing, body sensations, senses, thoughts, or emotions. When you notice your mind starts racing , stop yourself, get back to the present moment, and focus on your breathing.
Focus On Your Bodily Sensations
While sitting quietly, focus on the sensations on your whole body. Notice tingling, pulsing, and muscle tension. Pay attention to every part of your body from head to toe and give yourself plenty of time to explore these sensations.
Focus On Your Senses
Notice sounds, sights, smells, touches, and tastes and let them linger in your mind without letting your thoughts wander. Use these senses to anchor yourself in your body, and in the present moment.
Focus On Your Emotions
Whether you feel joy, anger, frustration, or agitation — accept these emotions for what they are.
2. Coping With Cravings
Observe how you feel when you get a strong craving. Instead of giving into cravings right away, tune into your body and steady your mind. The strong pull towards your craving will eventually subside.
3. Practicing Yoga
Yoga aims to bring the body and the mind together through movement. It’s backed by multiple scientific studies, shown to provide mental and physical benefits. According to research, practicing yoga can reduce migraine episodes and symptoms.
4. Engaging In Art Therapy
Paint, draw, mould, or weave! Making art is a powerful psychotherapy technique for managing your response to psychological, emotional, and physical problems related to pain.
5. Practicing Tai Chi
An ancient Chinese martial art that’s sometimes called meditation in motion. Tai chi promotes calmness and peace of mind through gentle movements of the whole body while practicing deep breathing.
Get mindfulness support from a professional
While mindfulness techniques are tools we can use to centre ourselves, sometimes we need the help of a professional. Wellin5’s team of registered clinical counsellors are here to help you better deal with life’s challenges and find positive mental health. Get matched with a counsellor who meets your unique needs and start your first session in 1-3 days. Take the first step.
Stanley Clark is a community development volunteer and writer. He had worked on several commercials, events, and campaigns before writing full-time in the area of natural health and wellness.