Meditation is a versatile practice with a number of benefits. One might meditate to clear their mind, to visualize their goals, to hone their energy, and for many other reasons. If you have ever asked “what is mindfulness meditation?” or if you are interested in learning more about this branch of meditation, you have come to the right place. Here is an introduction to mindfulness meditation and a few reasons you should consider trying it.

What is Mindfulness Meditation?

As the name suggests, mindfulness meditation is practicing mindfulness through meditation. Mindfulness is the basic human ability to be fully present and aware, without being overwhelmed or over-reactive to daily events and the world around us. Mindfulness meditation is a branch of meditation where you focus your energy on the present moment and on simply being.  

While other types of meditation may focus on changing your mental state or visualizing a certain outcome, mindfulness meditation is the practice of using meditation to become fully aware of your current situation, nothing more and nothing less. People practice this through breathing exercises, silent reflection, and more.  

Benefits of Mindfulness Meditation

Now that we have answered “what is mindfulness meditation” you may be interested in the benefits of this practice. There are a number of scientifically backed reasons why practicing mindfulness meditation is good for your physical and mental well-being. You may consider incorporating this practice into your routine because:

  • Mindfulness meditation gives you a chance to become more aware of the things around you. This can include everything from focusing on the present and not dwelling on the past to giving yourself a mental space to make the most of the present
  • Practicing mindfulness, in general, is proven to reduce stress, improve your memory, help you stop over thinking, and more.
  • Mindfulness meditation offers the chance to reduce judgment and nurture curiosity.
  • This practice offers a number of physical benefits including lowered heart rate and blood pressure, lower anxiety, more feeling of connection, and more.

Getting Started With Mindfulness Meditation

Starting a mindfulness meditation practice is easy! A common way to practice mindfulness meditation is to sit down in a quiet place with your eyes closed, legs crossed. Next, focus your attention on your breathing. Simply continue to release your thoughts and focus on the air coming in and out of your lungs. If you have never done this before, it may feel odd or uncomfortable, but that is okay! Start by doing this for only 5 to 10 minutes, and build on the amount of time you practice as meditation becomes more routine. For more ideas, try this 5-minute mindfulness meditation you can do anywhere!

Alternatively, if you are brand new to meditation and would like an expert to direct you, consider trying guided meditation. Guided meditation classes and videos are meditation classes where a teacher or expert can help you explore this practice and move into a meditative state.  

Now that you have answered “what is mindfulness meditation?” check out more thoughts from our writers on mindfulness including these mindfulness exercises for groups and these mindfulness books to curl up with!  

Megan Herndon

Megan is a Seattle-based writer who covers health and wellness. She has worked in content marketing and journalism for a number of organizations including The Seattle Globalist, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, and The Jakarta Globe. She has a BA in journalism from the University of Washington and is currently working on her second UW degree, a Master of Communication and Digital Media. Born and raised in Hawaii and currently embracing the Pacific Northwest lifestyle, Megan loves all things active and outdoors including hiking, camping, outrigger canoe paddling, and yoga.

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