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How to Practice Mindfulness – Helping Hearing Parents

How to Practice Mindfulness

Much of the information provided on this page has been taken from Meditation For Dummies (2nd edition), which was written by Stephen Bodian with the Forward written by Dean Ornish, MD (2006).  This material is reproduced with permission of John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

How Can You Practice Mindfulness?

The following section discusses a series of steps you can take to practice mindfulness.  Within each section, we ask that you focus on your breathing and your body awareness.  In this way, you can develop a deeper understanding of your body’s needs and take care of yourself.  Feel free to practice these techniques as you feel comfortable to do so.  It is strongly advised that you practice on a daily basis so that you can learn to relax your body, mind, and spirit.  Feel free to download our helpful Tracking Guides as you grow in your skills.

 Tracking Guide Part 1: Beginning Mindfulness Practice

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Please click on the image to download the Tracking Guide Part 1 PDF.

 

Begin by taking a moment to turn your mind inward and pay attention to what you’re sensing and feeling.  Because mindfulness grows like a house on a foundation of concentration, you’ll need to strengthen and stabilize your concentration in order to practice mindfulness expertly.  Find a comfortable place to lie down or sit in a comfortable place and close your eyes.  Check your body and notice how it connects to the surface of the bed or floor.  Focus on your breathing, counting your breaths – in through your nose and out your mouth.  When you inhale, count “1.”  When you exhale, count “2.”  If you lose track return to 1 and start again.  10-15 minutes.

Tips

 

  • Begin Day 1 on any day of the week practicing the breathing exercises for 21 days
  • Allow your breath to find a natural depth and rhythm
  • If your mind begins to wander during this exercise, be gentle with yourself.  Acknowledge the thought or sensation, but push it out of your mind and bring your focus back to your breathing
  • If you find the first 21 days a challenge, please continue this section until you feel ready to move to Part 2

 

Tracking Guide Part 2: Mindful Breathing

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Please click on the image to download the Tracking Guide Part 2 PDF.

The goal of mindfulness meditation is to develop the full capacity to be fully present for whatever is occurring within the here and now.  Continue to practice mindfulness and build on the skills you works so hard to establish in Part 1.  Begin this exercise exactly the same way that you did when you were counting your breaths.  When you are comfortable, focus your attention on either the sensation of your breath coming and going through your nose and out of your mouth OR on the rising and falling of your stomach as you breathe.  Continue practicing for 10-15 minutes.

Tips

  • Begin Day 1 on any day of the week practicing the breathing exercises for 21 days
  • Remember to ground yourself by noticing where your body connects to the surface of the bed or floor
  • Imagine all tension training away
  • If your mind wanders, gently bring it back to your breathing
  • If you find the first 21 days a challenge, please continue this section until you feel ready to move to Part 3

 

 

 

Tracking Guide Part 3: Mindfulness Sensations

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Please click on the image to download the Tracking Guide Part 3 PDF.

Continue to pay attention to the inhalation and exhalation of your breath, slowing your mind to match the speed and rhythms of your body. Once you have become skilled in focusing on your breathing, you can expand your awareness to include more wide ranges of sensations both inside and outside of your body. Begin by following your breathing and then just open yourself to each sensation that arises.  Let each sensation arise and pass away in your awareness. You can expand your awareness to include one particular kind of sensation, such as bodily feelings or sounds.  Practice spending your breathing time just listening to the sounds around you, without focusing on any sound in particular.  Welcome any experience or thought without judgment.

Tips

  • Begin Day 1 on any day of the week practicing the breathing exercises for 21 days
  • Follow your breathing and then just open yourself to each sensation that arises
  • Expand your awareness to include your entire sensory field (hearing, seeing, smelling, touching, and tasting)
  • Practice spending your breathing time just listening to the sounds around you, without focusing on any sound in particular
  • Continue to practice and make time for yourself throughout your day

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