Our experience of life can be rich and fulfilling – even in times of hardship.
However, we tend to spend much of our time either stuck in the past with things that can’t be changed, or thinking about the future – and so miss out on the vibrancy of our life whilst it’s actually happening.
Mindfulness is a powerful, yet gentle, trauma-sensitive and intrinsically compassionate approach, drawing on awareness of the breath, body and, specifically, the activity of the mind. We learn to be more in touch with ourselves; to develop the ability to make skillful choices, most particularly to respond – rather than react – to our experience, especially to things we cannot change in the past, present or future.
Rooted in ancient meditation traditions, and validated both by contemporary neuroscience and by NICE (the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence), the effectiveness of Mindfulness has a strong evidence base. Research suggests* that therapists who have Mindfulness training have more positive outcomes with their clients than those who have not.
Mindfulness skills help us work with stress, anxiety, emotional or physical pain, depression, chronic illness, fatigue and chronic illness as well as to navigate the ups and downs of ordinary everyday life. Through learning to listen to ourselves more deeply we can access our own powerful inner resources for transformation and healing, and so handle stress more effectively.
Those who integrate Mindfulness into their lives report experiencing a range of benefits including greater ease, enhanced creativity in working with challenges, reduced stress, through being more in touch with themselves by:
- waking up more fully to each moment
- responding rather than reacting to unwelcome situations
- accessing relaxation more readily
- bringing greater acceptance to ill-health, pain and stress
MBCT (Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy)
MBCT and Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), which have been developed in Europe and North America since the 1970s – are forms of Mindfulness normally delivered in the form of 8-week courses for small groups where participants are trained to develop this approach, which involves “intentionally bringing awareness to the present in a non-judgemental way”.
The skill is developed through engaging in systematic training in regular meditation practices and bringing the effects of this into daily life. Anyone willing to apply themselves regularly can benefit from doing these simple practices. Our objective circumstances may not be changed, but we can alter our relationship with that experience, and so greatly enhance our quality of life.
Take the first step to feeling more in tune with yourself with Mindfulness Therapy in the City of London
Many of the psychotherapists at City Therapy Rooms bring ‘Mindfulness’ into the one to one sessions. Lokadhi Lloyd is a longstanding Mindfulness and meditation practitioner, specifically trained and experienced in bringing Mindfulness into her in-person sessions. To find out more please see Lokadhi’s profile page.
*Crane, R., Elias, D., 2006, ‘Being With What Is, Mindfulness practice for counsellors and psychotherapists’, Therapy Today 17(10)31