Have you noticed a total deluge of headlines from the news in the first 2 weeks of February are flooding readers with the magic of mindfulness. Consider these randomly selected tidbits:
“Smartphone based Mindfulness training can Reduce Loneliness” summarizing a Carnegie Mellon study.
“Mindfulness Proven to be a Powerful Painkiller” from Psychology Today
“Children Across England Now Being Taught Mindfulness Training” everywhere in the media!
“Spanish Schools are Teaching Mindfulness” from Euro Daily
Mens Health Magazine, “This Mindfulness Technique Will Enhance Your Sex Life”
“Mindfulness May Ease Menopausal Symptoms” from US News & World Report
“Dallas Police Officers Benefitting from Mindfulness Training”, CBS Dallas
“Mindfulness: Good Tool For Backcountry Skiers to Sense Avalanches”, Helena Independent Record
Forbes, “How to Manage Teams Through a Meditative Lens”
All across the news: Calm (a mindfulness app) valued $1 Billion
And a little dissent from the Irish Times, “Mindfulness Classes for Politicians Might Not Be Such a Good Idea”. Article points out how the turning inward might make narcissistic individuals more focused on themselves.
A big dissent from me: unmonitored, self-help mindfulness can be detrimental for victims of trauma. That bombshell is another blog topic to explore in the future.
I do not like popular culture trends in general. In my practice clients have benefitted enormously from developing and using skills of Mindfulness in their daily lives to reduce a variety of symptoms. ADHD/ADD, Anxiety in many forms, Depression, Grief, Relationship Issues, Anger, Substance Abuse, Parenting all become tamer with a comprehensive mindfulness routine. Working with children, adolescents and their parents, I can certainly testify to the power of teaching meditation skills in all its’ forms (of which there are many) to young children through adulthood. Current headlines are singularly focused on the daily meditation apps and routines used to find an inner sense of personal calm, balance and “wellness”.
The Irish Times article resonates deeply in its’ spotlight on the narcissistic quality of mainstreaming mindfulness today. Harvesting a true love for others and our physical world is equally important to the practice of mindfulness and largely absent in the press. We know this concept as GRATITUDE. Awareness of ourselves in a global community is central to the impact of a mindfulness practice. Bringing this awareness into every minute of our existence is a key ingredient to healing.
In the spirit of gratitude, University of Massachusetts Medical School is a founding institution and has generated an enormous body of scientific evidence-based research in the field of mindfulness also offers an online extensive mindfulness training program. It is free, as in costs absolutely no money. Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction (MSBR) is a thorough practice for any adult interested in learning how to live mindfully. The link: