Mindfulness

Mindfulness is the process of bringing your attention to experiences occurring in the present moment, without judgment. It's a strategy of "slowing down" the mind when it's going too fast, the mental equivalent of taking a deep breath.

Though it originates in spiritual practice, mindfulness has since been adopted and expanded upon by psychological research. In a 2018 meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials, mindfulness-based interventions were found to be effective across a range of disorders[1], especially depression, chronic pain, and addiction. It's about as effective as other evidence-based therapies, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy or antidepressant medication. (TODO: explore the literature on individual differences in therapy responsiveness-- who is better suited for mindfulness vs. CBT?)

Mindfulness is a skill you can use at any time to help cope with difficult thoughts or emotions. Intentional practice makes it easier: it's often trained using meditation exercises that involve focusing awareness on your breath and the physical sensations of different parts of your body.

(TODO: SRS meditation exercises?)
Written by Jake Leoht

Further Reading

References

  1. Goldberg, S. B., Tucker, R. P., Greene, P. A., Davidson, R. J., Wampold, B. E., Kearney, D. J. & Simpson, T. L. (2018). Mindfulness-based interventions for psychiatric disorders: A systematic review and meta-analysis Clinical psychology review.