Benefits of Mindfulness

 

The benefits of Mindfulness have been documented in medical and psychological research journals for the past 30 to 40 years.

 

Some of these benefits include:

 

  • Reduce stress

  • Reduce rumination (worrying)

  • Reduce emotional reactivity

  • Reduce anxiety and depression symptoms (through reducing amygdala activity)

  • Improve working memory                     

  • Improve cognitive flexibility

  • Improve self-awareness (through recognizing habitual patterns of thinking, mood and feelings so that one can move out of auto pilot mode and be more aware of own reactions)

  • Improve compassion towards selves and others

  • Improve emotional regulation

  • Improve ethical behavior

  • Improve relationship satisfaction

  • Improve wellbeing

 

From the workplace perspective, mindfulness enhances leadership and helps team players become more creative, set and achieve their goals, communicate well and resolve conflict. Other benefits include:

 

  • Reduce costs of staff absenteeism and turnover

  • Improve cognitive function - (i.e. better concentration, memory and learning ability and decision making)

  • Improve productivity (from increased information processing speed, decreased task effort and increased ability to manage distractions)

  • Improve self-resilience, sleep quality and reduced burnout

  • Enhance employer/employee and client relationships

  • Improve employee engagement and enhance employee job and life satisfaction

 

 

 

From neuro-scientific and physiological perspective, studies found that regular mindfulness practice:

 

  • Drives positive neuroplasticity (i.e. brain structure and function) changes that reflect well-being, such as emotional balance, compassion, genuine happiness, as well as potential buffering of stressful and traumatic experience when it does occur. (Lutz, Dunne, and Davidson 2007)

  • Increases activity of the left hippocampus,  the area of the brain associated with learning, memory and emotional regulation (Hölzel et al, 2011)

  • Mindfulness practice can affect the pre-frontal area of the brain, which has integrative functions that impact many areas of the brain and body, suggesting that mindfulness has a positive influence on resilience, self-regulation and well-being (Siegel, 2007)

  • People who have consistent mindfulness practice has thicker regions in frontal cortex (responsible for reasoning and decision making), and well as thicker insula (involved in sensing internal sensations and critical structure in the perception of emotional feelings). As the cortex and insula normally start deteriorating after age twenty, mindfulness meditation might help make up some of the losses due to aging. (Lazar, 2005)

  • In long term meditators, emotional sounds caused less activation of the amygdala, a part of the brain that plays an important role in anxiety and stress and responsible with processing fear and aggression. (Brefczynski-Lewis et al.2007)

  • Increase immunity functioning (Davidson et al, 2003) and decreased sympathetic nervous system activation (Limm et al, 2011)

 

 

Mindfulness will not make your problems go away, but it will change your attitude and perception of how you see your problems, such that they no longer become problems for you. 

 

 

“The present moment is the only moment available to us, and it is the door to all moments”

~ Thich Nhat Hanh

© 2015 - 2019 by MINDFUL INSIGHTS. 

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