Meditation practice and “mindfulness” have received a lot of attention in recent research and therapy circles. The ability to slow down and focus attention can benefit us in multiple ways – both physically and emotionally. Is it a result of our overscheduled and tech-addled lifestyles that we’ve lost touch with ways to quiet the mind? A recent article in the New York Times explored recent research that suggests individuals who learn meditation techniques are more likely to help others who are suffering. In the study, individuals were either assigned to a six week class to learn meditation/mindfulness strategies or to a “wait list” control group. When faced with a stranger who was on crutches and in need of a seat, 50% of the meditator group were willing to give up their seat, only 16% of the non-meditator group were. Although a small study, it points to the possible outcome that learning meditation strategies may make us; a) pay more attention to others, and/or b) feel more connected to others and therefore willing to help. Link to the full article: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/07/opinion/sunday/the-morality-of-meditation.html?_r=0
There are several therapists at Northshore clinic who can teach mindfulness and mediation strategies. If you are interested in learning more, please contact us!