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Mindfulness Meditation: An introduction

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Mindfulness Meditation: An introduction

This is part of our free guided mediation series: 5 ways to meditate. To sign up for the series click here.

Mindfulness is a simple but powerful practice that anyone can do. It does not require you to quiet or still your mind. It does not ask you to feel a certain way. Instead the practice is to simply become aware of your own present moment experience, as it unfolds, without judgement and without reactivity. Done regularly this practice supports mental clarity, reduces stress and promotes greater resiliency in the face of challenge. 

Begin by taking a moment to get comfortable wherever you are. Whether you choose to do this practice in a seated or reclining position, make any adjustments you can so that you may feel at ease in your body. Soften or close your eyes, and as you begin to relax into your position you may take a few deep breaths, allowing yourself to arrive in this moment.  

Consciously relax your belly, the space around your heart, and your shoulders. 

Staying relaxed in your body, allow yourself to become gently and quietly curious. Notice all the places where your body is in contact with the earth, and allow those places to remain heavy and relaxed. 

Notice the natural movement of your breath, the way it moves through your inner body, gently expanding your belly and your chest. Allow your breath to remain soft and relaxed. 

Now become aware of the movement of thought across the surface of your mind. Stay relaxed as you watch your thoughts come and go, gently resisting the urge to follow them by remaining curious about the moment at hand. Notice that you can watch your thoughts in the same way you might look up and watch clouds move across the surface of a vast blue sky. 

Stay with this experience of being relaxed in the present moment, at ease in your body and able to witness the rise and fall of your breath, the steady coming and going of thought, sensation, and emotion. Notice everything, judge nothing. 

Stay here, resting in the still point of the witness for a few more moments before quietly re-entering your day. Bring this quality of mindfulness with you, and notice how it affects the quality of your day. 

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