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Breathe yourself happier. Sunday January 12, 2014

I read a very interesting article in the Daily Mail this week in which they reported that a review of some previous studies has found that regular meditation could alleviate symptoms of depression as well as conventional anti-depressants.

It claims that just 10 to 20 minutes per day of mindfulness meditation can have a significant benefit on overall mental health and wellbeing. And there's proof. Imaging studies show that the brain lays down extra connections and tissue in areas associated with attention, memory and empathy in proportion to the hours of meditation practised. They were also able to see stress reactions in the brain dissolve once people begin to meditate.

Apparently variants of Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy are now being used to treat suffering arising from a wide range of diseases such as cancer, heart disease, diabetes and arthritis. In addition, it is being used for back problems, migraine, chronic fatigue, irritable bowel syndrome and multiple sclerosis.

If you'd like to read the full article, just follow this link:

Caroline Ashcroft

Thoughts on the above? Please feel free to post a comment on our Blogspot:

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Adam Sun, Jan 12th 2014 @ 8:59am

I have found mindfulness meditation extremely helpful both for depression and migraine.

Ida Sun, Jan 12th 2014 @ 9:33am

i started doing meditation a couple of months ago but this week is the first time that i did it twice! I find it helps with focusing and especially focusing on just being. it took a while to be able to not let your mind wander but i feel that i am getting better at it this week. i like the feeling of calmness in yourself, especially in this busy and rat race world of ours. Now that i have talked about it, I think I will squeeze in 20 mins of meditation now to end the week right!

Kirsty Sun, Jan 12th 2014 @ 10:10am

I'm a recent convert to Mindfulness. I have been off work for the last 6 months and am just returning back now. Whilst off work, it was easy to find the time.

Now I am back it is getting harder to fit it in, but I am determined to keep it going as this is the time I need it most. So far, I have found that if I do it as soon as I get home, it is most useful and really helps me leave work at the office and get back to me.

Anonymous Sun, Jan 12th 2014 @ 11:27am

Great article in the Mail. Also outstanding post for today. Thank you. I have been practicing on and off since I read Jon Kabot-Zin's "Full Catastrophe Living" when it first came out. I am going to commit to 20 minutes a day 5 days a week for 2014.
One point for those who are people of faith, whatever faiththst might be. Everything said about this as a Buddhist practice is true. It has aldo been practiced for centuries by Christians as "Centering Prayer".
What I find is that I practice the mindfulness as the author of the article describes. This has powerfully healing effects on my arthritis, severe fibromyalgia, anxiety and depression. Around 15 or 20 minutes into the practice, I can enter a contemplative, spiritual state of prayer. This brings healing to my body, my mind, and my soul.
Thanks again.
Margaret Park

Anonymous Sun, Jan 12th 2014 @ 11:30am

I cannot endores giving meditation a go. It took me some time to learn to be still and silent but after a few weeks it bacame easier. I now meditate every day for 20 mins or so and the benefits are tangable. Try this if you find it difficult to sit for any length of time. One minute every hour, just a minute silence and pausing can have untold benefits

Anonymous Sun, Jan 12th 2014 @ 1:50pm

Different to the 'waking-up and thinking' in the night...which seems often to be
anxious-ridden ! I do like the 'one minute an hour', idea though even then, 60 secs.
is very deceptive at can feel like rather longer ! Conscious breath- awareness might help...

Anonymous Sun, Jan 12th 2014 @ 5:23pm

I'm starting to practice mindfulness meditation and together with a couple of yoga classes each week it has really helped me over the last three months while I have been off work with depression. I thought I was well enough to return to work on a phased return basis. I did so but it must have been too much too soon as anxiety shot up and sleepless nights returned. So I am now accepting that I need a little more time off and to ensure my return to work is more gentle and done more mindfully. I would be interested to hear about others experience of returning to work and staying healthy one you are back.


Anonymous Sun, Jan 12th 2014 @ 5:29pm

Thanks for this reminder - I will try to take up meditation again.
I have found on line guided meditation really useful as its FREE and easier than trying to do it by yourself.
Useful links here:

Julia Sun, Jan 12th 2014 @ 9:39pm

Hi Caroline. I have been driving back from France today so only just seen your blog; I haven't had time to read the article yet but look forward to learning more about mindfulness. It really does seem to work and it's good to receive reminders to try it out.

Anonymous Mon, Jan 13th 2014 @ 12:24pm

There's an excellent article in The Guardian at the weekend by Julie Myerson -
Backs up the Daily mail article, esp focussed on Anxiety, which is my struggle.
Definitely worth reading.

David Oliver Tue, Jan 14th 2014 @ 9:22am

Great article you linked me to. But at the bottom, in the most read news, about
the girl Danielle on the missing sailboat. She was my daughter's best friend when we lived in Baton Rouge.

I just found out 3 weeks ago and can't get the news out of my mind.

Caroline Ashcroft Tue, Jan 14th 2014 @ 9:50am

Hi David, so sorry to hear about Danielle - I hadn't read about it until your post. Her poor parents not knowing what has happened. I do hope they find her.

Teri Tue, Jan 28th 2014 @ 4:54pm

Hi I just wanted to say, that i find meditation and mindfulness a good preventative measure and helps when i'm not feeling too bad, but when I am really low I find it a very difficult task to do and concentration is almost impossible

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