Mindfulness: Experiencing the Present Moment

“We take care of the future best by taking care of the present now.”

— Jon Kabat-Zinn

Mindfulness is a way of living that cultivates present-moment awareness. It encourages us to focus our attention on what’s happening right now, without judgment or getting caught up in past regrets or future anxieties.

Mindfulness practice emphasises acceptance. We allow life to unfold naturally, without clinging to desired experiences or pushing away unpleasant ones. This openness allows us to experience the full spectrum of life, both positive and negative, without filtering it through judgment.


Breaking Free from Autopilot

“The little things? The little moments? They aren’t little.”

― Jon Kabat-Zinn

Mindfulness helps us become aware of our automatic behaviours. By becoming aware of our automatic behaviours we can choose to to repeat them or try doing something different.

Often, we go through the day on “autopilot” missing the richness of each moment. By becoming more mindful, we can engage our senses fully, like noticing the birdsong, the scent of flowers, or the clouds drifting by during a walk. Mindfulness allows us to appreciate the little joys hidden within our everyday experiences.

From Ancient Wisdom to Modern Applications

While mindfulness has roots in Buddhist traditions, it has gained popularity in secular contexts thanks to the work of Jon Kabat-Zinn in the 1970s. Supported by scientific research, mindfulness is now used to address various physical and emotional conditions, including stress, depression, pain, and trauma.

Meditation Movement Mindset

Mindfulness can be practiced formally through dedicated meditation sessions, either guided or self-directed. Informal practice integrates mindfulness into daily activities, such as eating, walking or listening to another with focused attention on the present moment.

Mindfulness goes beyond techniques. It cultivates specific attitudes that enhance the practice. These include non-judgment, trust, patience, a beginner’s mind, non-striving, letting go, and acceptance. Additionally, gratitude and generosity are often included as beneficial attitudes.

Ready to Experience the Power of Mindfulness?

If you’re interested in cultivating present-moment awareness and reducing stress, anxiety, or other challenges, I can help. An 8-week mindfulness course will be starting this September at The Pound Arts Centre in Corsham. Join me to learn practical techniques and develop a sustainable mindfulness practice for yourself.

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Don’t just take it from me

Mindfulness has numerous benefits which are documented in clinical research:

Prevention of depression relapse – Efficacy of Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy in Prevention of Depressive Relapse: June 2016 – Willem Kuyken, PhD1; Fiona C. Warren, PhD2; Rod S. Taylor, PhD2; et al. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0092656616301118

Improvement of immune function – Demonstrated by a study carried out by David Cresswell, a Research Scientist at Cousins Center for Psychoneuroimmunology at UCLA in 2008, on patients with HIV. https://www.uclahealth.org/news/mindfulness-meditation-slows-progression-of-hiv-study-shows

Improvement of chronic pain symptomology – Chronic pain patients reported improvements in pain symptomology and quality of life after completing the MBSR program and improvements were sustained after a 3-year follow-up. Full catastrophe living: using the wisdom of your body and mind to face stress, pain, and illness. Jon Kabat-Zinn. Delta Trade Paperbacks. 1991. ISBN 0-385-30312-2.

Improvement of mental clarity and focus – Demonstrated in the research, Intensive meditation training improves perceptual discrimination and sustained attention: MacLean K. A., Ferrer E., Aichele S. R., Bridwell D. A., Zanesco A. P., Jacobs T. L., et al. (2010). https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/20483826/

Improvement of heart health – Demonstrated in the research, Randomized controlled trial of mindfulness-based stress reduction for prehypertension. Joel W Hughes 1, David M Fresco, Rodney Myerscough, Manfred H M van Dulmen, Linda E Carlson, Richard Josephson. (2013) https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24127622/

Enabling greater autonomy – The Benefits of Being Present: Mindfulness and Its Role in Psychological Well-Being: Kirk Warren Brown and Richard M. Ryan. University of Rochester.(2003) https://selfdeterminationtheory.org/SDT/documents/2003_BrownRyan.pdf

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“There are only two days in the year that nothing can be done. One is called Yesterday and the other is called Tomorrow. Today is the right day to Love, Believe, Do and mostly Live.”
Dalai Lama XIV