Do you know the difference between mindfulness and meditation? According to the American Psychological Association (APA.org, 2012), mindfulness is: “…a moment-to-moment awareness of one’s experience without judgment. In this sense, mindfulness is a state and not a trait. While it might be promoted by certain practices or activities, such as meditation, it is not equivalent to or synonymous with them.” Mindfulness is not related to any religion.
Meditation is thinking carefully about something. Originally the purpose of meditation was to help deepen understanding of the sacred and mystical issues in life. Meditation, these days, is use for relaxation and stress reduction.
Mindfulness and meditation have been practiced for years. There is a diversity of opinion on the benefits that both techniques can offer to the physical and mental health of the person who practices them regularly.
Common benefits of mindfulness and meditation
- State of deep relaxation.
- Calm mind.
- Greater concentration.
- Greater memory.
- Greater creativity
- Another perspective of the situations.
- Greater self-knowledge.
To obtain these benefits, make sure you have the following elements when you decide to practice any of these techniques.
- Relaxed breathing.
- A quiet place, without interruptions.
- Wear comfortable, loose clothing.
- Have comfortable posture (sitting, lying down or walking).
- Relaxed and open attitude (so as not to judge any thoughts).
Give yourself the opportunity to experience something new. You only need 5 minutes, take a deep breath, repeat a “mantra” or create your own. You can pray, read a poem or prayer that gives you peace. Mindfulness and meditation are techniques that can help relax the mind and protect us from toxic stress. Success in your practice!
By: Tania Mangual-Monzón, MS
Instituto Europeo de Psicología Positiva