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What Is Mindfulness Therapy?

June 12, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 131

Much learning does not teach understanding. - Heraclitus

Mindfulness is a state of complete attention to the present moment. Mindfulness is paying attention in a particular way - on purpose, or a kind of non judgmental way that presents a centred awareness in which each thought, feeling, or sensation is acknowledged and accepted as it is.

Development of mindfulness helps us:

- See and feel things in a different way.

- Disengage us from any habitual responses including automatic thoughts and behaviours such as worry, anger, abnormal eating behaviours (binging, purging, starving yourself,  etc.)

- Change our deep beliefs.

- Re-establish good values.

- Become more aware of who we are.

Training ourselves to improve our capacity to remain calm and collected while facing fluctuations of life has a long history. Mindfulness was a central feature of Buddhism dating back at least twenty- five centuries. Most other religions and philosophies also base their principals on calmness of the mind, strength of spirit and love and compassion of the heart. So, the elements of mindfulness have been used to address people's sufferings and for teaching purposes for a very long time.

Mindfulness therapy has 4 stages. If the person has managed to go through all 4 stages, the therapy becomes very effective. The stages are: a personal stage, an exposure stage, an interpersonal stage and an empathic stage.

1. The Personal stage - is when the person learns to promote a deep level of awareness and acceptance through mediation and learning. Another way to say this is the person learns to regulate their attention and emotions.

2. The Exposure stage - is learning to decrease the reactivity to external situations through mediation and the mindfulness state.

3. The Interpersonal stage - is learning to prevent the emotional reaction to other's reactivity.

4. The Empathic stage - is learning to feel connected to ourselves and to others in a compassionate way.

Consistency in learning and meditating is the key. It normally takes at least a few weeks of practicing to notice any positive effects. A positive attitude to the treatment improves the outcome of the therapy. People who are negative to the treatment may need extra time to learn more about the therapy and change their attitude to it first before they get great results. Generally, mindfulness therapy does not have any side effects and is tolerated well by most people.

Specialised meditation for eating disorders will help you to reduce the urges to binge, purge, and/or starve yourself.

Dr Irina Webster MD is a recognised authority in the eating disorders area. She is an author of many books on women health. She propagates mindfulness therapy and neuroplasticity as a treatment for eating disorders.

Source: EzineArticles
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