A New Year for Learning Mindfulness
In this modern day society, most people’s minds are always working on overtime. A lot of this has to do with our high stress lifestyle and overuse of technology. This means that our brains are always thinking, and our minds often race with many different thoughts at once. At the end of the day it can be impossible to turn off your mind and stop thinking.
Until recently I had no idea what “mindfulness” exactly means, or what it even is. Mindfulness is a combination of yoga, meditation and body awareness that is loosely based on Zen Buddhism. To be perfectly honest, when I started to learn about mindfulness I was very skeptical, as it sounded quite frivolous. The whole point of mindfulness is to make yourself aware of only the present moment and to not think about the rest of your thoughts. When I tried doing these simple meditations, I actually underestimated just how hard it is to clear your mind completely.
Jon Kabat-Zinn is considered the authority on the modern-day mindfulness movement. Anderson Cooper recently interviewed him on 60 Minutes.
He is the author of the book Full Catastrophe Living, which is considered the manual on mindfulness.
Listening to audio CDs on mindfulness meditation can also be quite helpful. My favourite CDs are the Guided Mindfulness Meditation series, also read Jon Kabat Zinn. There's something about his voice that you will either love or hate. I personally find it quite relaxing.
Being mindful is something that can be done daily, just like eating well and exercise. Here are some other books on mindfulness:
Mindfulness: An Eight Week Plan for Finding Peace in a Frantic World, by Mark Williams
Mindfulness, by Ellen J. Langer
Mindfulness, by Domyo Sater Burke
In this Moment: Five Steps to Transcending Stress Using Mindfulness and Neuroscience, by Kirk Strosahl
A Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction for Anxiety, by Bob Stahl
Rough Guide to Mindfulness, by Albert Tobler
Mindfulness for Beginners, Jon Kabat-Zinn
Mindfulness Survival Kit: Five Essential Practices, by Thich Nhat Hanh
There are many other books and resources from the library on mindfulness.