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Mindfulness practices include focusing on the breath and body through meditation , movement and the development of a more mindfulness attention to everyday activities . All of these approaches help us learn to recognise the feelings and patterns of thinking that cause suffering , so that we can respond in ways that cultivate wellbeing and happiness. Many people find they need the support of a guided CD when starting out.

Mindfulness practices are deceptively simple, but the clue is in the word ‘practice’. Though the techniques are easy to learn and can be done anywhere , long term positive benefits require gentle patience , perseverance and regular practice.

Although we’ve all heard of meditation , many don’t really know what it is and are a little bit hesitant to try it ourselves. Before we describe the practices, , we would like to take this opportunity to dispel a few myths:

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** Although meditation is rooted in the Buddhist tradition , it is not a religion . In fact, the practices can be traced back to many different contemplative traditions. It is a form of mental training that can be done by anyone, regardless of whether they follow a religion , or are athiest or agnostic. It is beneficial to people of any age and background.

** You don’t have to sit in the lotus position on the floor (unless you really want to).

** Meditation is not complicated . It is also not about ‘success or failure’ . Even when it feels hard , such as if you become sleepy you can still learn something important about how your mind , senses and body work that will benefit you psychollogically . In fact , some of the best learning may come from these struggles if we can stay open and present to what happen within us.

** Meditation does not have to take a lot of time, although persistence , patience and practice are needed. In fact, some of practices we will suggest only take three minutes.

I will complete in article 3 soon.


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