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Gary J Stearman

Mindfulness v meditation.

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Mindfulness as many of you know is being able to live for the moment or focus our attention on the immediate.

Mindfulness meditation is also put forward as the ability to observe during meditation (headspace is an excellent example of this technique)

Tai chi, yoga and qigong are all examples of moving mindful meditation, through concentration meditation is achieved.

Knitting and fishing are also forms.

By practising focused attention on our many daily activities gradually this effect can be added to more and more of our daily lives creating a more relaxed stress-free environment for ourselves, this means that when we have to be alert, we will be much stronger.

The ability to relax and use our computer brain is necessary to become a skilled operator

Two examples are:

When driving a car we don't have time to think before braking.

In Martial arts you don't have time to think before reacting.

In both scenarios reprogramming is required, and the more relaxed we are the moire effect our reaction.

I think these are both examples of focused mindful attention/meditation.

Do you have any areas in your life that you find yourself developing mindful meditation?

 

 

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I definitely am finding I am completely in flow when I work with people to help them.  Time goes by, and I go through a range of feelings with them, always right in the moment, and sharing energy.  The more I practice with people, the more I love it, the better I get.

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Hi Gary,

This is a great topic. I've recently been writing about the feelings versus emotions and this is definitely an area in which to practice mindfulness, and I do so myself.

As emotions are hard-wired into us, part of our biology they cause changes in the physiology. We share these emotions with all humans and many mammals, and they serve useful functions. Broadly they are instigated by one of three motivations - the avoid motivation, the approach motivation and the attack motivation. So we may experience an emotional response to someone barging us in the street, or closing a door in our faces, and there will be chemical responses in the body that put us on alert, perhaps a bit of adrenaline. It is at this moment where mindfulness is key, as immediately following that emotion will come the 'feeling'.

Feelings are entirely subjective, they come from a different part of the brain and are the result of all our experiences, beliefs, associations. So one small incident of a door being shut in our face could spark feelings that associate with rejection, low self-esteem or any number of subjective responses, which if left unchecked could ruin a day (or worse!) However with mindful recognition of what feelings are following an emotion it is possible to head them off at the pass. You give back to yourself control of your feelings. You have a chance to apply reason and/or compassion,  you can reason that the person who shut the door may not have seen you, or maybe they saw you, but they acted from a place of their own suffering. Either way, you start to remove the feelings of suffering, empower yourself and avoid victimhood. Mindful self-regulation.

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Great response Cassiun

You have explained your experiences very well. The base technique I try to teach is a 1-3 second delay while we observe any situation, this is where observation techniques taught in headspace like programs help us train our minds.

Instantly in any situation, we are first engulfed in the fight/flight reaction. (this isn't that common nowadays but examples might be a step in the road where a car hoots, or for me the reaction when mucking around with a fellow martial artist. or a kid running out on the road when driving with the driver swerving) This rection obviously need to remain instinctive.

Past that we get the watered down fight/flight which is when we get the though attacks, you may think what a prat, or finding anger boiling up, maybe find yourself opening your mouth in an argument. this is where the delay should kick in, the thoughts feelings should be observed which lets the rational mind kick in and act. I nowadays might say something like cor that need a bit of thought or such. which is a delaying tactic to let the thoughts wash over and be properly analysed. 

I have found that my general speech patterns are now a lot slower until I have something decisive to say, then I can let passion reappear in my speech.  I guess everything has a price.

Effective communications is obviously a lot better than loads of waffle.

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I love this discussion! Thank you for bringing it up, Gary!

Shinzen Young teaches a system called Unified Mindfulness (UM), where he is essentially saying (not a quote ... my rough interpretation) that you can bring meditation into everything you do, in every moment. It is a training that builds 3 muscles: Concentration, Clarity, and Equanimity. These 3 are the things that develop with a meditation or mindfulness practice. I have done many different types of meditation over the years, but I find the UM system is great for building those 3 muscles through a purposeful focus on what's happening now through feeling, hearing, seeing. This tends to short-circuit or typical "animal brain" response and help us tune in on a moment-by-moment awareness.

The other cool thing is that it teaches you can build these muscles even with 5-10 minute sessions and "quick hits" of 1 or 2 minutes throughout the day.

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Hey Gary and interested others ...

They have a great free training course in their system they call Core Training. It has 10 video lessons, quizzes, a discussion forum, and guided meditations audios.

BTW, I am not associated with them in a promotional way. I just took their teacher training and find their system very effective, personally and as a coach.

 

Edited by WendyShinyo
Took out link because the post was marked "hidden"?
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I just tried to tell you more about the UM training and my post was mark hidden. Am I doing something wrong?

They have a great free training course in their system they call Core Training. It has 10 video lessons, quizzes, a discussion forum, and guided meditations audios.

Here is the link: https://unifiedmindfulness.com/

BTW, I am not associated with them in a promotional way. I just took their teacher training and find their system very effective, personally and as a coach.

Edited by WendyShinyo
Put the link back in for moderation
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Hi Gary, 

My mindfulness practice started under a wonderful meditation teacher who guided me through a traditional practice of present awareness in meditation where I learned to be still and love it. I have also had the blessing of being led through Emotional Focused Couples Therapy to apply that same present awareness when my emotions are in a agitated state, like when presented by a trigger..which then I follow with some kind of CBT technique to unravel and attend and regulate my experience.

In my work as a Traditional Thai Massage Therapist the work calls for my absolute attention to the present moment..first through my own body and then to the relationship and communication with my clients body..and even sometimes their thoughts should they be processing during their session, I listen with many senses at once. Because the work requires that I really listen deeply to their tissues as the work is done with the possibility of my full body weight or a feather of a touch I must stay aware at all times so that I can respond with care and with reverence to what is arriving both physically and emotionally. Because I have been practicing for many years the physical part comes without thinking..when I touch my body knows what to do..but still when I am totally and fully present with my attention and intention the work is much deeper for us both. I realize that it is not natural for this human to be always mindful..as in meditation it is the nature of the mind to chatter and to wander...but I gently bring myself back with love and compassion and get on with the work of the moment. This is what I love about practice...practice is practice..is practice.

I will often tell my clients in my work to try to take a moment in their day to practice mindfulness, like at a time when it is not challenging..like the grocery store line. Your just standing their totally bored and waiting and waiting..so I say...take a moment to notice your breath, say to yourself " when I inhale I am inhaling, when I exhale I am exhaling". Then I will say pick one body part that you know carries a lot of tension and just notice it..like your shoulders..just feel them..where are they? Often they are up around the ears! haha! I tell them, thats pretty natural as we humans can die from someone cutting us there( that big artery, right?) so first I frame the judgment that is usually present when one first notices..so I say it's natural for us to raise our shoulders to protect our vulnerable neck! The thing is we can consciously let that go in the moment and get some relief now. So I say just notice what is present without judgment..now if you choose to you can now decide to bring the breathe to this place of tension and allow the shoulder to drop, now notice what has changed?. Thats it! it takes 5 minutes or less. What I share with them is that when we take time for practice like this simple exercise it is rewiring the brain for less judgement and more relaxation! No need to walk around like a monk! It's interesting to hear the relief in my clients experience and that now it seems attainable and something they can do anytime..I think practices like this are infectious and that same mindful awareness will inevitably invade other parts of our experience.

Okay that's it...Sorry for any typos or bad sentence structures!

L

Edited by thaimassagewithliz
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On 7/10/2018 at 4:46 AM, Cassian Hall said:

Hi Gary,

This is a great topic. I've recently been writing about the feelings versus emotions and this is definitely an area in which to practice mindfulness, and I do so myself.

As emotions are hard-wired into us, part of our biology they cause changes in the physiology. We share these emotions with all humans and many mammals, and they serve useful functions. Broadly they are instigated by one of three motivations - the avoid motivation, the approach motivation and the attack motivation. So we may experience an emotional response to someone barging us in the street, or closing a door in our faces, and there will be chemical responses in the body that put us on alert, perhaps a bit of adrenaline. It is at this moment where mindfulness is key, as immediately following that emotion will come the 'feeling'.

Feelings are entirely subjective, they come from a different part of the brain and are the result of all our experiences, beliefs, associations. So one small incident of a door being shut in our face could spark feelings that associate with rejection, low self-esteem or any number of subjective responses, which if left unchecked could ruin a day (or worse!) However with mindful recognition of what feelings are following an emotion it is possible to head them off at the pass. You give back to yourself control of your feelings. You have a chance to apply reason and/or compassion,  you can reason that the person who shut the door may not have seen you, or maybe they saw you, but they acted from a place of their own suffering. Either way, you start to remove the feelings of suffering, empower yourself and avoid victimhood. Mindful self-regulation.

Gary, I would love to have a look of what you have been writing about. Where can I read it?

Greetings from Colombia mate 😉

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On 7/11/2018 at 4:53 PM, WendyShinyo said:

I just tried to tell you more about the UM training and my post was mark hidden. Am I doing something wrong?

They have a great free training course in their system they call Core Training. It has 10 video lessons, quizzes, a discussion forum, and guided meditations audios.

Here is the link: https://unifiedmindfulness.com/

BTW, I am not associated with them in a promotional way. I just took their teacher training and find their system very effective, personally and as a coach.

Thanks, Wendy Ill certainly look through the system, thanks for the link, I know now why they stay pink 🤠

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On 7/12/2018 at 4:40 AM, Liz Babcock said:

Hi Gary, 

My mindfulness practice started under a wonderful meditation teacher who guided me through a traditional practice of present awareness in meditation where I learned to be still and love it. I have also had the blessing of being led through Emotional Focused Couples Therapy to apply that same present awareness when my emotions are in a agitated state, like when presented by a trigger..which then I follow with some kind of CBT technique to unravel and attend and regulate my experience.

In my work as a Traditional Thai Massage Therapist the work calls for my absolute attention to the present moment..first through my own body and then to the relationship and communication with my clients body..and even sometimes their thoughts should they be processing during their session, I listen with many senses at once. Because the work requires that I really listen deeply to their tissues as the work is done with the possibility of my full body weight or a feather of a touch I must stay aware at all times so that I can respond with care and with reverence to what is arriving both physically and emotionally. Because I have been practicing for many years the physical part comes without thinking..when I touch my body knows what to do..but still when I am totally and fully present with my attention and intention the work is much deeper for us both. I realize that it is not natural for this human to be always mindful..as in meditation it is the nature of the mind to chatter and to wander...but I gently bring myself back with love and compassion and get on with the work of the moment. This is what I love about practice...practice is practice..is practice.

I will often tell my clients in my work to try to take a moment in their day to practice mindfulness, like at a time when it is not challenging..like the grocery store line. Your just standing their totally bored and waiting and waiting..so I say...take a moment to notice your breath, say to yourself " when I inhale I am inhaling, when I exhale I am exhaling". Then I will say pick one body part that you know carries a lot of tension and just notice it..like your shoulders..just feel them..where are they? Often they are up around the ears! haha! I tell them, thats pretty natural as we humans can die from someone cutting us there( that big artery, right?) so first I frame the judgment that is usually present when one first notices..so I say it's natural for us to raise our shoulders to protect our vulnerable neck! The thing is we can consciously let that go in the moment and get some relief now. So I say just notice what is present without judgment..now if you choose to you can now decide to bring the breathe to this place of tension and allow the shoulder to drop, now notice what has changed?. Thats it! it takes 5 minutes or less. What I share with them is that when we take time for practice like this simple exercise it is rewiring the brain for less judgement and more relaxation! No need to walk around like a monk! It's interesting to hear the relief in my clients experience and that now it seems attainable and something they can do anytime..I think practices like this are infectious and that same mindful awareness will inevitably invade other parts of our experience.

Okay that's it...Sorry for any typos or bad sentence structures!

L

Thanks for the reply Liz, fantastic, certainly no worries about typos. We all have them.

I lived in Thailand for 15 years and can perform Thai massage, my note ex-wife was a therapist many years ago, plus I lived on the beach on Koh Phi Phi and my diving shop was next to a large massage hut, I took full advantage of this, and though I didn't fully engage in muay Thai (the bruising is not recommended with scuba diving) I did often have a great need for tissue repair.

When giving a massage your intent and will is for the clients health to improve, and this intention is amplified to the client, I relate this as simalar in form to Reiki, and other healing therapies.

Any way thanks again, I'll keep my eye out for you 🤣

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On 7/12/2018 at 1:18 PM, David said:

Gary, I would love to have a look of what you have been writing about. Where can I read it?

Greetings from Colombia mate 😉

Hi David thanks for your views, you obviously have fantastic knowledge in this direction.

To find content you can click on there profile and see created content, you can also follow a member. 

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On 7/10/2018 at 4:46 AM, Cassian Hall said:

Hi Gary,

This is a great topic. I've recently been writing about the feelings versus emotions and this is definitely an area in which to practice mindfulness, and I do so myself.

As emotions are hard-wired into us, part of our biology they cause changes in the physiology. We share these emotions with all humans and many mammals, and they serve useful functions. Broadly they are instigated by one of three motivations - the avoid motivation, the approach motivation and the attack motivation. So we may experience an emotional response to someone barging us in the street, or closing a door in our faces, and there will be chemical responses in the body that put us on alert, perhaps a bit of adrenaline. It is at this moment where mindfulness is key, as immediately following that emotion will come the 'feeling'.

Feelings are entirely subjective, they come from a different part of the brain and are the result of all our experiences, beliefs, associations. So one small incident of a door being shut in our face could spark feelings that associate with rejection, low self-esteem or any number of subjective responses, which if left unchecked could ruin a day (or worse!) However with mindful recognition of what feelings are following an emotion it is possible to head them off at the pass. You give back to yourself control of your feelings. You have a chance to apply reason and/or compassion,  you can reason that the person who shut the door may not have seen you, or maybe they saw you, but they acted from a place of their own suffering. Either way, you start to remove the feelings of suffering, empower yourself and avoid victimhood. Mindful self-regulation.

Hi @Cassian Hall, where can I see your texts about this topics?

Edited by David
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On 7/9/2018 at 10:47 PM, Gary J Stearman said:

Mindfulness as many of you know is being able to live for the moment or focus our attention on the immediate.

Mindfulness meditation is also put forward as the ability to observe during meditation (headspace is an excellent example of this technique)

Tai chi, yoga and qigong are all examples of moving mindful meditation, through concentration meditation is achieved.

Knitting and fishing are also forms.

By practising focused attention on our many daily activities gradually this effect can be added to more and more of our daily lives creating a more relaxed stress-free environment for ourselves, this means that when we have to be alert, we will be much stronger.

The ability to relax and use our computer brain is necessary to become a skilled operator

Two examples are:

When driving a car we don't have time to think before braking.

In Martial arts you don't have time to think before reacting.

In both scenarios reprogramming is required, and the more relaxed we are the moire effect our reaction.

I think these are both examples of focused mindful attention/meditation.

Do you have any areas in your life that you find yourself developing mindful meditation?

 

 

As always, great question Gary!

I find I drift into a mindful state when I take time out to reflect at the end of the day, as I let go of everything and sit just experienceing the last 24 hours it could be said I head into a meditative state.

This gives me freedom to consider everything from an open minded perspective.

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