Embracing Mindfulness Meditation

I had dabbled with meditation off and on for a while, but it wasn't until my introduction to Mindfulness Meditation that I began to embrace it as a habit or practice. I found out about Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction from my doctor, who referred it to me as a way of coping with my anxiety. At this point, I had read introductory material about the practice, but had not actually participated in sessions - so I enrolled in an 8-week MBSR Course. I am very glad I did.

Upon completion of the MBSR course, I had so many benefits that I decided to join one of her groups that met on a monthly basis.

Among the most significant improvements I have seen since adopting a regular mindfulness meditation practice are a great reduction in my anxiety, a greater sense of peace of mind, and an improved ability to take on the stresses of life directly.

Before regular meditation practice, I experienced a great deal of mind chatter and internal dialogue on a regular basis. I had been plagued with this for a long time, and negatively impacted several areas of my life. This problem seemed to dissolve as I adopted a daily habit of taking at least 20 minutes to meditate.

Another aspect that meditation helped with my ability to accept the moment, and stop resistance to undesirable situations. This negative habit caused a large degree of stress in my life, and I believe it was chiefly responsible for my anxiety situation. As time went on after the sessions, I saw in myself an ability to recognize situations as they were, and not add any extra "drama" to them. Even though I would still come across challenges in my daily life, the impact would seem to be removed from them, and the suffering would be much less.

Moving further in this direction, as I began to get away from the duress of daily challenges, I found myself able to communicate better, and be less moody. In my dealings with others, I found myself less angry and more patient. I was now finding that I was able to get to the root of a feeling, to find the pure emotion of a situation. In other words, instead of just a vague or crude reactionary emotion such as anger, frustration, or despair, I was becoming able to dig deeper and address the underlying reasons for those emotions. Instead of instantly reacting, I'd be able to trace the root of my anger to hurt, for instance. At that point, I could face the situation without judgment and address the real "problem" beneath all of the residual emotion. I felt much more calm this way, and my social dynamics seemed to improve.

I am very grateful for my experiences so far with meditation, and I intend to continue. I'm glad to have it as a part of my daily life.

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