Even 5 minutes of mindfulness meditation a day can have a powerful positive effect on your brain. It can make you calm, improve your ability to solve problems, and improve your creativity. Mindfulness is basically a super power. We’ve put together these steps for to get you started.

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What is mindfulness?

Mindfulness is ‘Paying attention in a particular way: one purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgementally.’ According to the world famous expert on mindfulness – John Kabit-Zinn.

This means noticing your thoughts, what your body feels like, what your ears are hearing, noticing the air coming in with each breath you take.

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Create time and space

Choose a regular time each day for mindfulness meditation practice, ideally a quiet place free from distraction

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Set a timer

Start with 5 mins and work your way up to more. You might want an alarm during the day to remind you to take time to meditate.

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Get comfy

Sit in a comfortable position. Cross legged on the floor, or in a chair with your feet flat on the ground. Sit up straight and relax your shoulders.

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Close your eyes

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Breathe

Pay close attention to your breathing, especially when you’re feeling intense emotions.

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Notice

Really notice what you’re sensing in a given moment, the sights, sounds and smells that ordinarily slip by.

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Recognise

Recognise that your thoughts and emotions are fleeting and do not define you, an insight that can free you from negative thought patterns.

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Tune in

Tune in to your body’s physical sensations, from the water hitting your skin in the shower to the way your body rests on your chair.

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Deeeep breathes

Deep breathing settles your body. As you inhale and exhale focus on your breathing. During the mindfulness meditation keep bringing yourself back to your breathing.

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Be kind to yourself

Mindfulness meditation is requires practice, you don’t always get it right. Don’t be frustrated if you accidentally fall asleep!

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Gently come back into the room

When the timer goes off, keep your eyes closed until you’re ready to open them. Be thankful and give yourself a pat on the back.

Here’s some more tips on mindfulness and meditation:
The Mental Health Foundation info /bit.ly/1XMACub
Young Scot fun tips bit.ly/1OuJ6Pt
Smiling Mind app bit.ly/1g0V6hK
Conscious Mind app bit.ly/1QxXIir
Calm app bit.ly/1b6soDH

If it’s still getting you down, don’t hesitate to talk to your GP or call NHS 111.

Always talk to someone about how you’re feeling, someone you trust or a helpline, such as Samaritans on 08457 90 90 90, for confidential, non-judgmental emotional support. Or ChildLine 0800 1111 to get help and advice about a wide range of issues, talk to a counsellor online, send ChildLine an email or post on their message boards.

Sources:
http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/stress-anxiety-depression/Pages/mindfulness.aspx

http://www.rd.com/health/wellness/10-steps-to-mindfulness/

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