Written by Niamh Coghlan

Benefits of Mindfulness
You may be thinking what is this wishy washy, hippy, mindfulness that is cropping up ABSOLUTELY EVERYWHERE, and you wouldn’t be the only one feeling like that. It seems to have exploded on the scene at lightening pace and the bearded man in the office, who drinks only locally sourced, organic, 5-year aged coffee is now preaching the life changing benefits of mindfulness.

Well don’t let its Buddhist past or it’s Hipster present put you off this useful tool, mindfulness can and should be used by everyone – Just some of the benefits include;

  • Reduction in visits to healthcare provider
  • Effective method of stress reduction
  • 65% improvement in quality of life experienced by group of cancer patients
  • Reduced intake of pain relieving medications amongst chronic pain sufferers

There are clear proven improvements in both your immediate mental health and your long term physical health – Is it high time we take this seriously and implement it as part of your prescribed medication?

What actually is mindfulness?
The benefits alone speak for themselves, but I figure you need some concrete information on what mindfulness is, how does this popularized trend give you health benefits?

Mindfulness is a skill to be learned whereby we become really good at accepting what has happened, acknowledging we have little ability to control the future and arguably the best part of the skill, allowing us to master mentally being in the present moment.

What can I do right now to get immediate effects?
Of course, in the age we live in there is a plethora of apps on the market that’s sole aim is to bring you some inner peace. Other ways to aid you in your mindfulness quest would be to search your local community for some classes or if you’re not ready to take your mindfulness public? Try the masses of online content on YouTube or Udemy.

“In a little over two decades’ mindfulness has gone from being a specialist element of Buddhist teaching to a must have app for celebrities and businesses use it reduce staff stress and boost productivity, it’s even prescribed by the NHS for anxiety and depression,” says, Phil Pegum from BBC 4 Radio.

As the NHS approaches winter and its seasonal mounting pressures, and with forecasters predicting these pressures to continue long beyond our cold weather, it’s important we use the tools available to us to bring mindfulness to the masses. This will have a positive effect on our health and thus decrease pressures on our NHS.