When we cultivate the kind of awareness that comes through mindfulness practices, we have the opportunity to pause and choose how we respond to the inevitable triggers and stresses of life in the moment it is happening. This is a powerful and even life-changing technique to use when you get cut off on the highway or have a heated discussion with your boss.
The practice of mindfulness has been highly effective in treating addiction, mental illness, and chronic pain for years because it helps you deal with impulsive and compulsive tendencies in a different way. There is research coming out all the time on how it can enrich everyone’s life. Here are my top 10 reasons to practice mindfulness:
- Reduce your stress. Mindfulness shifts your ability to use emotion regulation strategies to experience less anxiety, depression and distress and actually lower your cortisol levels.
- Improve your performance. Neuroscientists have proven the practice of mindfulness creates new neural pathways to rewire the brain, leading to heightened brain function to improve working memory and overall work performance.
- Increase your ability to focus. By focusing on the present moment in the mindfulness practice, you heighten your ability to focus your attention and suppress distractions in your daily life.
- Experience less emotional reactivity. The ability to respond and not react to stressful situations and the ability to return to baseline after a negative situation improves overall quality in all areas of your life.
- Enrich your relationships.Mindfulness is important because autopilot is the most dangerous enemy to a healthy relationship.
- Sleep Better. A secondary benefit of mindfulness is relaxation which improves getting to sleep and staying asleep.
- Strengthen Your Resilience. Mindfulness is a wake up call to become conscious of how we perceive and respond to life’s situations.
- Lose weight. With more mindful eating that comes from mindfulness training, psychologists agree you are more likely to maintain your weight loss.
- Improve your overall happiness and well-being. With more focus, relaxation, and less stress, you experience more happiness and enhance your capacity to experience the joys of everyday life.
- Improve your bottom line. Studies from some of America’s biggest and best corporations have shown that health and happiness directly affect the bottom line.