Dr. Valerie Rice - Mindful Moments
I hope you will join me in this new series on mindfulness, where we will examine what mindfulness is, what it does, and what research is revealing. I have confidence that you, as readers, will ask questions or suggest a focus within the topic of mindfulness that you are particularly interested in. Finally, I trust you will read with an open mind, not necessarily condemning, and not automatically jumping onboard, until you’ve heard more or practiced on your own.
Mindful Moments: Why Should I Meditate, Where Will it Get Me?
In the 1 ½ hours I no longer have to commute to work due to teleworking, I’ve put my extra time to good use. I’ve joined additional Facebook groups. First, I stayed in the couple of groups in which I was already a member, and tried to post upbeat messages, along with happy photos from my family stash. After all, we are not supposed to be milling around close to people, so my only subjects are my husband, my grandson, my dog, and me. For cuteness, attractiveness, appeal, and appearing cheerful, my 2-year old grandson wins hands down, followed closely by our labradoodle.
Mindful Moments: Meditation in Difficult Times
Meditation can be guided or non-guided. Most of the information I’ve posted thus far in this blog has reflected non-guided meditations. During non-guided meditations, one focuses on physical sensations that align one with the present moment, such as the breath, sound, and physical sensations. Guided meditations can also be helpful, whether you, yourself are the guide, or someone else guides you through the meditation. In this case, you align yourself with the content and wording of the meditation.
Mindful Moments: Can Mindfulness Meditation Training Impact Physical Pain?
While it may seem improbable to some, mindfulness meditation can reduce physical pain – in a way. I’ve seen pain reduction happen quickly during a guided body scan on the first day of mindfulness training when a military veteran attendee exclaimed “That was the first time I haven’t felt pain in seven years! It was only for a short time, but I didn’t feel pain!” In this case, the intense attentional focus on physical sensations of body parts not associated with his chronic pain, allowed the physical sensation of pain to subside into the background of his attention…and he didn’t feel pain.
Mindful Moments: Loving-Kindness
I fear for this world, when I listen to the news or hear about someone’s mistreatment of another. I feel discomfort when I become aware of local, perhaps smaller situations, as well as larger political statements or practices that take advantage of a particular group or prevent individuals from equal and ample human rights.
Mindful Moments: Mindfulness and Self-Compassion
A person is considered to be self-compassionate when they give the same concern, kindness and support they’d give to a loved one or a close friend, to themselves.1, 2 they recognize their mistakes and shortfalls and offer themselves kind counsel, instead of punitive self-judgment when they perceive they’ve done something wrong. They acknowledge their painful experiences, but do not dwell in them, instead working with and through their experiences with loving self-kindness.
Mindful Moments: Mindfulness Meditation
It always amazes me how quickly buzzwords change and the next greatest health-craze is announced. However, rather than dismissing something just because it sounds ‘new’ would be a mistake, as medicine is a work in progress, never finished, and ever discovering answers to posed questions...