The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation
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The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation
You will feel a deep sense of peace, contentment and confidence in yourself.
Curated by Kat Tansey
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Former Editor of Oprah Magazine Opts Out for a More Mindful Life

Former Editor of Oprah Magazine Opts Out for a More Mindful Life | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

--Amy Gross was editor in chief of O, the Oprah Magazine from 2000 to 2008. She writes . . .

 

"After decades of the monthly magazine cycle, the thrill of spotting a fresh idea, shaping it for our audience, commissioning the right writer --that thrill had subsided to a small tickle. Instead I was finding challenge, purpose, and meaning offsite, in mindfulness meditation, the Buddha’s prescription to end suffering. He discovered that if you pay attention to what’s going on, moment to moment—without trying to hold onto what feels good or push away what feels bad—your relationship to pain changes."

 

Kat's Note:

I'm not advocating that we drop out of our busy lives -- but learning to meditate provides respite and a new perspective that will help reduce stress and increase our happiness.

 

Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com

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Close Your Eyes: How Meditation Can Help Your Career - Forbes

Close Your Eyes: How Meditation Can Help Your Career - Forbes | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it
An Eastern practice that once seemed like something more common among the hippy crowd, meditation is making its way into the mainstream workplace, and its results are doing everybody good.

 

Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com

 

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How to survive gridlock like a Buddha

How to survive gridlock like a Buddha | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

Sometimes meditation practitioners take themselves much too seriously. I've had this espresso drinking, cell phone talking Buddha doll on my dashboard for many years, so I really identified with this article by Sarah Hampson in The Globe and Mail.

 

If you find yourself reacting to suggestions about the value of meditation like this: "Do what? You've got to be kidding! I don't live on a mountaintop. I live in the real world." --- then you too will enjoy Sarah's article.

 

Being human doesn't mean you can't benefit from meditation. Most importantly, you don't have to give up your sense of humor. Most of us who meditate are not enlightened beings who live on mountaintops. I still have temper tantrums, think badly of others sometimes, have little fits of anxiety (there, I've said it). But imagine who I would be if I didn't meditate?

 

Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com

 

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» From Trauma to Transformation: An Interview with Jack Kornfield

» From Trauma to Transformation: An Interview with Jack Kornfield | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

"I want them (people who are suffering) to know that their experience is part of our humanity, part of the difficulty and the gift of human incarnation and we are all called upon to bear our sorrows as well as our joys, and that we can bear them and they’re not the end of the story. Our sufferings don’t define us and we don’t have to be so loyal to our suffering that we don’t see that there is a greater mysterious majestic dance that we’re a part of." ~~ Jack Kornfield, talking about how he works with people who are dealing with past trauma as they learn to meditate.

 

Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com

 

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The Science of Lovingkindness

The Science of Lovingkindness | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

More research studies are showing that practicing lovingkindness meditation positively affects health and well-being. In some of these studies, the benefits were revealed after only twelve hours of meditation.

 

~~ Note from Kat Tansey ~~

I had a lot of resistance to this practice, but when I finally broke through and was able to incorporate it into my own practice,  I experienced significant healing -- both emotionally and physically.  I write about this in Chapter Eight of Choosing to Be.

 

Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com

 


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The importance of Lovingkindness toward ourselves as a meditation practice

The importance of Lovingkindness toward ourselves as a meditation practice | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

"Contemplating the goodness within ourselves is a classical meditation, done to bring light, joy, and rapture to the mind. In contemporary times this practice might be considered rather embarrassing, because so often the emphasis is on all the unfortunate things we have done, all the disturbing mistakes we have made. Yet this classical reflection is not a way of increasing conceit. It is rather a commitment to our own happiness, seeing our happiness as the basis for intimacy with all of life. It fills us with joy and love for ourselves and a great deal of self-respect." ~~ Sharon Salzberg,  from her book Lovingkindness: The Revolutionary Art of Happiness

 

(This is a long excerpt, but well worth reading, as is this extraordinary book.)

 

Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com

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Meditators' Brains Function Differently

Meditators' Brains Function Differently | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

I know from 20 years of personal experience that meditation has changed and continues to change my brain. Now a new study from Yale University gives scientists a window into the meditating mind, providing evidence that the practice appears to change the way the brain works.

 

Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com

 

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Self Healing Benefits of Meditation

Self Healing Benefits of Meditation | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

Meditation does not mean sitting in a perfect state of peace while having no thoughts. Big misconception! Instead, meditation is about establishing a different relationship with your thoughts, just for a little while.

 

Instead, meditation is about establishing a different relationship with your thoughts, just for a little while. Instead of attention being drawn off by whatever thought happens to present itself, in meditation, you watch your thoughts from a different, more stabilized perspective. You're training yourself to place your attention where and when you want. This is very powerful. It gives you the ability to direct your thoughts (and mood) in more productive and peaceful directions.

 

(This is an excellent article by New York Times best-selling author Susan Piver.)

 

Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com

 

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What Kind of Buddhist was Steve Jobs, Really?

What Kind of Buddhist was Steve Jobs, Really? | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

This is a more in-depth look at the influence of Buddhism on Steve Jobs' life. By Steve Silberman, reporter for Wired Magazine. 

 

Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com

 

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Can Mindfulness Really Rewire the Brain?

Can Mindfulness Really Rewire the Brain? | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

Did you know that mindfulness practice is showing a reduction in the fear center of the brain (amygdala) and an increase in the rational brain (prefrontal cortex), so as you practice you literally rewire a steadier mind?

 

In this article, Elisha Goldstein, author of A Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Workbook, provides a brief free video instruction of his STOP exercise to help you get present and reduce stress. This is an excellent acronym and exercise -- try it today!

 

Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com

 

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Joffre (J.D.) Meyer's comment, October 18, 2011 8:47 AM
More rational thought (prefrontal cortex) and less fear (amygdala) sounds like great proof for meditation.
Don L. Price's comment, April 7, 2012 10:09 PM
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Sit. Breathe. Be a Better Leader.

Sit. Breathe. Be a Better Leader. | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

Meditation and mindfulness are edging their way into corporate America. This article in Inc Magazine reports on findings that show the benefits of meditation for corporate leaders. The art piece I used here is one of my own -- a sample of what my mind looks like at any given moment. Perhaps you can relate.

 

~ Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com    

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Meditation as Attentional Retraining - A Great Video Presentation by Daniel Goleman

Meditation as Attentional Retraining - A Great Video Presentation by Daniel Goleman | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

What strikes me most about this video by Daniel Goleman is the simplicity of the phrase that he uses, “attentional retraining.” In these two words, we are reminded of what it is that we’re working with during meditation – our attention – and what we’re doing – retraining it.  ~~ Jerome Stone

 

Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com

 

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Some “everyday wisdom” from Thich Nhat Hanh

Some “everyday wisdom” from Thich Nhat Hanh | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it
Mindful living is an art. You do not have to be a monk or live in a monastery to practice mindfulness. You can practice it any time, while driving in your car or doing housework. Driving in mindfulness will make the time in your ...

 

Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com

 

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My Mindfulness Practice Has Gotten Boring! What Happened To The Good Feelings?

My Mindfulness Practice Has Gotten Boring! What Happened To The Good Feelings? | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

I hadn't thought about this stage of my meditation practice for some time until I read this excellent article. As I reflected on my life before meditation (20 years ago), I remembered my need for drama, for big wins, for brilliant breakthroughs in order to feel alive.

 

And then I remembered that at some point in my meditation practice I too experienced this passage, this time when I felt that being a meditator had made me boring. I was comparing my mind to the minds of my friends and colleagues who valued the drama in their lives. As I let go of these comparisons, I felt a sense of freedom and was able to experience the joy that mindfulness brings. 

 

I think you will find this Psychology Today article quite insightful.

 

Kat Tansey

http://choosingtobe.com

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Five Helpful Steps to Becoming a Meditator

Five Helpful Steps to Becoming a Meditator | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

Like most meditators, I faced many obstacles in establishing a regular meditation practice. So I've created a free e-book that identifies the obstacles to establishing a meditation practice and provides steps to overcome them.

 

Many people have been helped in establishing their meditation practice by the information in this brief e-book. This is practical information you won’t get anywhere else. It’s short, with stories, pictures, and a bit of humor. 

 

PS - I created this Promise of Mindfulness Meditation blog you are reading now because I know without a shadow of a doubt that the practice of meditation makes a difference in peoples' lives. I hope you will follow this publication and share it with your friends. Together we can change the world -- one mind at a time!

 

                                                               Kat Tansey

                                                               www.choosingtobe.com

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Finding the Still Point in a Turning World

Finding the Still Point in a Turning World | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

In today’s busy world, it’s easy to lose our connection to the Still Point, and the further we get from it, the less it even occurs to us that we might need to visit it – because, after all, we have THINGS TO THINK ABOUT! THINGS TO DO!

 

When I hear people say they have tried to meditate, but it is just too hard, I know they have forgotten about (or maybe never knew) the inestimable and necessary beauty of the Still Point. . .

 

Kat Tansey

www.kattansey.com

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What Meditation Is To Me

What Meditation Is To Me | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

"When I started meditating three years ago, I read countless “how to” guides. I watched instructional videos. I listened to guided meditations. I went to workshops. I tried very hard to learn to meditate the “right” way. I tried it with my eyes open and closed. I tried meditating while staring at a candle flame, a single carpet thread, and about every other way imaginable. I have meditated with Gregorian chants, Tibetan chimes, classical and ambient music, native drumming, chirping birds, and white noise in the background.

 

After all of this and with time and practice, I have come to the conclusion that there is no right or wrong way to meditate. What is “right” is whatever works for me that day."

 

--Debbie Hampton is a remarkable woman who writes about the neuroplasticity of the brain. She knows a lot about this, as she has learned and applied a wide variety of modalities to help herself recover from brain injury. Meditation is an important part of her continuing progress and her life today.

 

Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com

 

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Noticing New Things as a Mindfulness Practice

Noticing New Things as a Mindfulness Practice | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

Harvard psychologist Ellen Langer is one of the leading experts on mindfulness from the perspective of Western academic psychology.

 

The way to pay sustained attention, she says, is to notice new things. Staring at something quickly becomes boring, so don't just look at the whole object, look at its parts, and their relation to the whole. You'll find things you never noticed before right in front of your nose.

 

~~ Note from Kat Tansey about this article~~

 

Mindfulness is about Paying Attention with a capital P and a capital A. In my book Choosing to Be, I learn about paying attention when I see how completely absorbed my kitten Catzenbear is while watching the whirlpool of water as it drains out of the tub. 

 

In this excellent 5 minute video, Ellen Langer gives some other examples that illustrate how easy it can be to begin a practice of mindfulness. 

 

Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com

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Against a 'Perfect' Meditation Practice

Against a 'Perfect' Meditation Practice | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

I love it when someone writes honestly about their struggle to become a meditator -- that's what I did in "Choosing to Be." Here is Priscilla Warner sharing her experiences as a new meditator. Her story feels pretty familiar to me.

~Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com

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Relax, kids: Meditation touted as stress buster for children

Relax, kids: Meditation touted as stress buster for children | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it
I haven’t studied enough. I’m going to fail the test. My mom’s going to be mad. Maybe I’ll skip class.

 

Thoughts like these can quickly gallop out of control in kids’ minds, but what if there was a way they could clear them away? Enter the three-minute breathing meditation, which can be done anywhere, whether it’s on the bus or in a school hallway.

 

Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com

 

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The benefits of meditation - from the MIT News Office

The benefits of meditation - from the MIT News Office | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

MIT and Harvard neuroscientists explain why the practice of meditation helps tune out distractions and relieve pain. In a study published in the journal Brain Research Bulletin, researchers found that people trained to meditate over an eight-week period were better able to control a specific type of brain waves called alpha rhythms.

 

The subjects trained in meditation also reported that they felt less stress than the non-meditators. “Their objective condition might not have changed, but they’re not as reactive to their situation,” Kerr says. “They’re more able to handle stress.”

 

Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com

 

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7 Ways To Hone Attention, Insight And Creativity by Jonathan Fields

7 Ways To Hone Attention, Insight And Creativity by Jonathan Fields | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

There are many reasons to consider some sort of meditation practice. In his new book, Uncertainty, Jonathan Fields makes the case for what he calls Attentional Training, and discusses the varied forms of meditation successful people use to achieve the benefits of AT. He elaborates on his Mindset Domination Strategy of Attentional Training in this article, and provides links to some excellent resources.

 

Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com

 

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What Meditation Really Is

What Meditation Really Is | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

The teacher who first opened my mind and started me on the path to meditation is Tibetan master Sogyal Rinpoche. In this brief video, he describes how to integrate meditation into our daily lives. I love that he talks about how directing our attention with meditation is a way to protect our mind and preserve our sanity. This is exactly how I feel about my meditation practice! 

 

Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com

 

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Research shows meditation improves the immune system and reduces blood pressure.

Research shows meditation improves the immune system and reduces blood pressure. | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

Meditation improves the immune system, reduces blood pressure and even sharpens the mind, according to research.

 

The authors identify four key components of "mindfulness" - the state of meditation - that may account for its effects: attention regulation, body awareness, emotion regulation, and sense of self. Together, these help us deal with the effects of stress.

 

Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com

 

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Will the New Facebook Lead to Information Overload?

Will the New Facebook Lead to Information Overload? | The Promise of Mindfulness Meditation | Scoop.it

While there may be no financial cost in spending time with social media, in many ways we pay with something far more valuable: our attention. How we dedicate attention is essentially how we choose to spend the limited heartbeats of our lives. This is a lesson the social networks of our time would benefit from. ~ Soren Gordhamer

 

Soren Gordhamer is the organizer of the Wisdom 2.0 Conferences, which brings together staff from Google, Facebook, Twitter and Zynga along with Zen teachers and others to explore living with awareness and wisdom in our modern age.

 

Kat Tansey

www.choosingtobe.com

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