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Mindfulness for Individuals: Mindfulness and Neuroscience

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Publisher : Enjoy TEFL

Course Language : English

Introduction

Welcome to the Mindfulness Course for Individuals, and thank you for choosing us. We believe that, by the end of the course, you will really be able to feel the benefit of practising Mindfulness in your daily life. 

Mindfulness Meditation Creates Awareness:

Mindfulness is best learnt through practising meditation and understanding the science of the brain.

The course will start by teaching you how to focus your attention on breathing, using a sitting meditation, which will train you to become more aware of inner and outer experiences.

Once a person has become more aware, it will give him/her a more responsive, compassionate, clearer and wiser way to experience events. It will allow you to adapt to your changing environment. 

We will also discuss the science of Mindfulness throughout the course.

Mindfulness Creates Balance, Compassion and Perspective:

Mindfulness helps smooth out the ups and downs of daily life. It can be used as an antidote to stress, and also to improve focus. Many of us often feel overloaded or as if we are on autopilot during the day but, by using Mindfulness, you will train yourself to focus your attention, using meditation techniques to create awareness.

This awareness will give your mind space and allow you to make wiser, more rational choices, instead of emotionally reactive ones. This emotional regulation will give you a way to achieve balance, perspective and equanimity.

By using Mindfulness, you will appreciate the present moment more and reduce distractions and thoughts about the past or what's going to happen in the future, to create clarity. This will give you a sense of contentment and help you relax.

You will learn to deal with life experiences and challenges in a different way and improve health, performance and relationships.

Enjoy those wonderful little moments you sometimes miss:

The aim of the course is to introduce you to the practice of Mindfulness and give you an understanding of what Mindfulness means and what it can do, because a person who is aware of his or her mind and body will find it easier to respond to any given set of circumstances on any given day. 

We also believe that over time, with practice, you can begin to use these skills naturally throughout the day. This will allow you to be in the present more often, which will give you more positive interactions with the world and allow you to enjoy those wonderful little moments you sometimes miss.

The Science:

Mindfulness is a meditative, scientific and philosophical way of interacting with our world.

There is scientific evidence which states that Mindfulness can help change the neuroplasticity of the brain in very positive ways. We will discuss this in more detail later in the course.

These positive changes result in the improved performance of the Brain's Executive Function, the higher level of the brain, which looks after perspective taking, decision making, long-term planning and learning. 

Research also suggests that, by using Mindfulness, the brain's emotionally reactive centre, the Amygdala, which triggers the 'fight, flight, freeze' stress response, can be overridden by the conscious part of the brain which can activate the 'relaxation response' and restore balance to the mind and body.

Mindfulness can also improve relationships at work and home by increasing emotional intelligence, which results in more compassion, kindness and empathy.

Therefore, Mindfulness promotes health, performance and relationships.

Harvard and Stanford University Research:

A 2011 study, from Harvard University, showed that participants in an 8-week Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction course exhibited measurable changes in the grey matter of their brains.

'The results suggest that participation in the course is associated with changes in grey matter concentration in the brain regions involved in learning and memory processes, emotional regulation, self-referential processing and perspective taking.' (1)

Another study from Stanford University showed that Mindfulness can reduce the reactive effects of the amygdala and strengthen the connections to the higher areas of the brain, which can override emotions. (2) 

Health, Performance and Relationship Benefits:

Research shows that Mindfulness practice can improve health, performance and relationships. We will discuss the positive benefits of Mindfulness throughout the course, and also present some of the scientific research behind Mindfulness, which we believe will deepen your knowledge and understanding of the subject. 

Anyone can learn Mindfulness:

Before we start the course, we would like to state that anyone has the ability to learn Mindfulness. Some people might take longer to discover the potential of Mindfulness than others but it doesn't matter.

Mindfulness is an individual, step-by-step, process because we all have different motivations for starting Mindfulness. Mindfulness is a skill that needs practice, like any other skill you will learn in your life.

One thing is for certain: by doing regular practice you will break down those unhelpful mental habits and impulses and become more aware and mindful. You will start making more rational decisions and feel more compassion for yourself and others.

Your day will go more smoothly: 

By using Mindfulness practice, your day will go much more smoothly: it will be calm and won't feel like you're in the middle of an ocean storm. It will feel like your 50,000 feet above the storm and looking down at the waves from the window of your plane.

Those waves will be just gentle ripples on the surface of a big pond. You will be seeing through mindful eyes.  

Our hope is to offer you a way to deal with life's ups and downs in a mindful way, using a combination of regular formal and informal activities to gain an authentic and natural way of living.