The Benefits of Mindful Living

People in the coaching and wellness community have long extolled the virtues of living in the moment. Our society places so many expectations upon us that we often dwell on what has gone before and what lies ahead instead of focusing in on the here and now. Far from simply a feel-good mantra, mindfulness has been shown to have many practical and measurable benefits for those who practice it.

A recent article in Scientific American details some of the mounting evidence for the value of mindfulness meditation and the mental capacity to focus on the present moment. Jon Kabat-Zinn has spent his life’s work on promoting and teaching mindfulness in service of health. While researchers can not say for sure why the treatments work, it does seem that the focus on mindfulness allows participants to stop the cycle of rehashing and dwelling upon negative thoughts about the past, which in turn helps them to not project those thoughts onto feelings about the future.

This time of year can be an extreme anxiety generator with the holidays, end of the year pending and future thoughts of 2016. I invite you to go within, allow yourself, the gift of “me time”. Take some deep breaths, close your eyes and just notice. Notice your heart beating, notice the sensations in your body, notice your thoughts. And if you notice judgment arising, note it and then keep noticing moment to moment.  Let the moment wash over you with ease, kindness, and love.

Creating life moment to moment has the potential for a more fulfilling future. What are some ways you remember to live life in the moment?