Mindfulness and Well-being
By helping you begin to recognize your habitual thinking patterns and other ingrained behaviors, mindfulness can play a significant role in enhancing your psychological and physical well-being. However, it can be difficult to sit back and watch your neuroses and problematic behaviors, as what we discover typically doesn’t fit the pretty picture of how we want to see ourselves. In meditation circles, it’s said that Tibetan meditation master Chögyam Trungpa once likened this process to having brain surgery without anesthesia, or to having to hear one insult after another.
It can be quite challenging to remain an impartial observer when you sit in a hall of mirrors, face-to- face with your fear, shame, guilt, and other unwelcome but familiar internal visitors. Mindfulness offers a space to step outside of this parade of mental wounds, aversions, and fantasies and simply observe them as they come and go. With time, you can learn to acknowledge difficult feelings and thoughts, see their origins more clearly, and experience deeper states of acceptance and peace.
Although this work is difficult, the journey of discovering your own heart is a noble path. There may come a time when you realize, “What else is there to do?” As Vietnamese Buddhist monk and tireless peace activist Thich Nhat Hanh says, “Every mindful step we make and every mindful breath we take will establish peace in the present moment and prevent war in the future. If we transform our individual consciousness, we begin the process of changing the collective consciousness” (2003, 56). How can you ever bring peace to the world if you don’t begin with yourself?
The information in this post is directly provided from the Workbook- “A Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Workbook By Bob Stahl, PH.D and Elisha Goldstein, PH.D