I’ve had an interest in mindfulness for a while now so discovering that there was a course near me was great. I live with anxiety and depression, and going to the first night was hard because it was a new thing and I wasn’t quite sure what to expect.
I was glad I went right away though. There was about ten people there and Paul, the facilitator, made everyone feel very welcome. The course is secular (there’s no religious stuff) and anyone can do it, regardless of belief.
What I found most interesting is that research has shown when we meditate it reduces the stress hormone, cortisol, and increases serotonin (see chemistry of mindfulness).
We learnt about mindfulness of breathing and that during meditation our minds would wander and this is natural and okay, and when we notice it happening we just accept it and return to paying attention to our breath.
I found the meditation very beneficial, lasting only five minutes. It was pretty easy to focus on my breath and to accept that my mind would wander and to come back to my breathing without any judgement of myself.
I’m looking forward to next week’s class!
Tiff Franks is a local blogger, living with anxiety and depression. We asked Tiff to write about her experiences on the course.
Read the next part of Tiff’s story.