The term Mindfulness comes from Eastern spiritual and religious traditions like Zen Buddhism.
It refers to being completely in touch with and aware of the present moment, as well as taking a non-judgmental approach to your inner experience.
Simply put, being mindful means knowing what you are doing (and thinking and feeling) in the present moment. “Sounds simple” you say? Think of the last conversation that you had with your child or loved one. How many times did you check your phone or drift off thinking of what you had to accomplish next? Or the last time you went to a party in hopes of enjoying yourself but instead were distracted by negative thoughts such as “what do they think of me” or “I’m not good enough to be here”. This inner dialogue distracted you from enjoying your moment.
Mindfulness practice helps us know clearly what is happening, and how we are reacting to what is happening, as it is happening, so that we might choose a skillful response instead of reacting mindlessly and ruining our moments. Many people are lost in worries about the future and regrets about the past. They are caught up in their projects and their fantasies, and their minds are not connected to their bodies. If the body is not united with the mind, we are not really alive. Many of the therapists at Northshore Counseling and Wellness incorporate mindfulness into their treatment plans. We use this practice not only to teach general health and happiness but to heal a host of mental health issues such as anxiety and depression, PTSD, eating disorders and many others.