"Give yourself permission to allow this moment to be exactly as it is and to allow yourself to be exactly as you are." Jon Kabat-Zinn
Professor Jon Kabat-Zinn is the founder of the Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Program (MBSR), developed in 1979, at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. The Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction program saw a coming together of western psychology and science and eastern meditation and yoga to develop a secular, meaning non-religious, mental skills training that helps to alleviate stress, anxiety, depression, chronic pain and a variety of other ills of modern day life. Participants in Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction programs have found the weaving of mindfulness practices into their daily lives, opens up the possibility of having a different relationship to whatever they are experiencing, allowing them to step out of habituated ways of reacting, that may be unhelpful.
Mindfulness programs are now taught across many different sectors, from community centres, hospitals, schools, universities, in organisations and even in the UK parliament. The proliferation of mindfulness programs has gained momentum as more and more research studies validate the benefits of these programs for human health and well-being, across the lifespan.
The benefits from mindfulness are derived from engaging in a regular mindfulness practice and weaving mindful moments into the fabric of everyday life. As a mindfulness practitioner and teacher I continue to be inspired by the profound effects mindfulness practices have on the lives of those who choose to make these practices as part of their daily life, no matter their age, education, health status or personal circumstances.
I invite you to take a few minutes to enjoy Jon Kabat-Zinn's explanation of mindfulness in the clip below: