What does mindfulness involve?
Mindfulness practitioners learn how to pay attention on purpose by practicing specially developed mindfulness practices. With practice, practitioners learn to slow down or stop brain chatter and automatic or habitual reactions, experiencing the present moment as it really is.
When practicing mindfulness, everyone, however much they practice, will experience thoughts creeping into their heads uninvited. This is fine – it’s just how our minds work, but how we respond to these thoughts is important. Mindfulness teaches us to have a different relationship with our thoughts.
One of the most effective ways to learn mindfulness is to attend a course. One of the most recognised and researched courses in the MBSR, usually taught over eight weeks, but this can be flexible to suit individual needs or organisations. Participants meet together once a week for around two hours to learn different mindfulness techniques led by a qualified mindfulness teacher. Home practice is an important part of the course and is often supported by audio guided sessions and also written material.