Lots of information, lots of responsibilities, a hectic lifestyle and constant rushing, high expectations, numerous challenges at work and at home, and therefore many potential stressors, are factors that largely characterize our daily lives. We live in a time rapid and turbulent change, which requires an incredible level of flexibility from our rapid adaptations to emerging conditions. Developing social and emotional skills as well as problem-solving skills are still not given enough attention, which to some extent leaves them to themselves, and makes our adjustment even more difficult.
Therefore, it is not surprising that an increasing number of people are experiencing symptoms of anxiety, dissatisfaction, sadness, and even depression. Recently, the popularity of focused awareness and virtual reality in the context of coping with stress has been growing. Recently, more and more attention is being paid to relatively new techniques and the application of technology for the purpose of coping with stress. A large body of research thus supports the many benefits of participating in mindfulness training. Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being, not merely the absence of disease and exhaustion. Unfortunately, many of us do not realize this until we feel the hardships. Of course, even then it is not too late to work on yourself.
The mental health of an individual, as well as the occurrence of many mental disorders are influenced by the social, economic, and physical environment, so the risks of mental disorders are largely related to social inequalities. Risk and protective factors operate at several different levels and this is at the level of the individual, the level of the family, community, as well as the structural and population level. Therefore, the social determinants of the health approach require acting in multiple sectors and at multiple levels.
Mindfulness meditation is an effective, simple, and scientifically based method of meditation that, despite having originated several thousand years ago, is still recently become famous in the western world. In other words, it is a state or aspect of our consciousness that we have become aware of centered thoughts and emotions.
In other words, before we automatically give meaning to a thought we think, an emotion we feel, or a thing we see, a brief “moment” of pure consciousness of that thought, emotion, or thing appears in our consciousness. This “moment” (Mindfulness) lasts so short that we do not even notice it in everyday life and we can only develop it with regular training. It is always recommendable to learn more about it before you start.
Today, mindfulness is given increasing importance in various fields – psychology, medicine, neuroscience, education, and the business world.
Today, there are more than 250 mindfulness-based stress reduction programs implemented in medical centers in the United States. Such programs have been shown to help reduce anxiety symptoms, obsessive-compulsive disorder symptoms, and chronic pain. Also, research shows that practicing mindfulness techniques increases levels of empathy and spirituality, well-being, and prevents relapse into depression and drug addiction. From all this, we need to be quite clear about the positive impact of mindfulness on our overall health.
It has been scientifically proven that there is a significant negative correlation between mindfulness traits and stress, anxiety, depression, burnout subscales – emotional exhaustion and depersonalization, both types of police stress, and physical health. Participants with less pronounced mindfulness experience and report higher levels of stress, are more anxious, depressed, emotionally exhausted, experience more symptoms of depersonalization, experience more stress at work (both organizational and operational), are less optimistic about the future, perform less well, and physical health.
To be mindful means to be aware. Practicing consciousness can mean eating and focusing on your senses. It can mean alignment with your breath, listening to your bodily sensations, or something else. You can allow the emotions and thoughts that “torment” you to come and go, gently accepting them. Being fully mindful means paying attention to the here and now. Then we are fully aware of our thoughts, emotions, physical sensations, and everything around us.
Paying attention to an open mind is hard to comprehend for a leaning Western society controlling nature by subordinating it to itself, rather than living accordingly. An open mind as the name implies opens up many possibilities and gives us a chance to get rid of unconsciousness without limiting ourselves to what we love, dislike or think, we have prejudices, projections, and expectations.
Whether you practice focused awareness through yoga, meditation, or some of your own techniques, it will have a positive effect on your goals of strengthening the body, as well as weight control, because focusing on what you do with yourself always brings quality. Mindfulness is even more important in the diet. Namely, attention in vain when choosing food, if you then put food in a trash can, so that you do not feel its taste and texture in your mouth. The result will be the wrong message sent to the brain, which will quickly signal hunger and look for extra calories, completely unnecessary for your functioning.
Regular practice of mindfulness helps to develop emotional intelligence, ie the ability to recognize our own and others’ emotions, manage emotions so as not to “overwhelm” us, and tolerate frustration and unpleasant situations.
It increases the ability to respond effectively to situations, based on one’s own choices, rather than reflexively or reactively (one ceases to be a “victim” or a puppet of one’s own feelings). It seems that all-encompassing awareness or mindfulness really encompasses more aspects. Then maybe it’s more about lifestyle, not techniques. Hence the exercise of mindfulness intervention not only improves symptoms but improves the overall quality of the conscious life. Mindfulness is not just another innovative phenomenon of this world, it is an experience that has been with us since the day we were born, and which we seem to have forgotten a bit.