Mindfulness is the psychological process of bringing one's attention to the internal and external experiences occurring in the present moment, which can be developed through the practice of meditation and other training.
The recent popularity of mindfulness in the West is generally considered to have been initiated by Jon Kabat-Zinn.
Large population-based research studies have indicated that the practice of mindfulness is strongly correlated with well-being and perceived health. Studies have also shown that rumination and worry contribute to mental illnesses such as depression and anxiety, and that mindfulness-based interventions are effective in the reduction of both rumination and worry.
Clinical psychology and psychiatry since the 1970s have developed a number of therapeutic applications based on mindfulness for helping people who are experiencing a variety of psychological conditions. Mindfulness practice is being employed in psychology to alleviate a variety of mental and physical conditions, such as bringing about reductions in depression symptoms, reducing stress, anxiety, and in the treatment of drug addiction. It has gained worldwide popularity as a distinctive method to handle emotions.
Clinical studies have documented both physical and mental health benefits of mindfulness in different patient categories as well as in healthy adults and children.
The quality of being fully present and attentive in the moment during everyday activities.
Originally a Buddhist practice, its purpose was “to alleviate suffering and cultivate compassion’’.
Mindfulness techniques appear to be effective in helping patients cope with pain, disability, and stress, and, similarly, may reduce stress in health care providers and enhance their ability to care for their patients.
Korones D. Living in the moment. JCO 2010;28(31):4778-79.