Activist Toolkit: Mindfulness to Go
By: H.A. O’Shaughnessy
My first encounter with mindfulness came a decade or more ago when Jon-Kabat Zinn visited the local university where I worked. My co-workers and I sat as Kabat-Zinn walked us through the essentials in the crowded student union. His book, Full Catastrophe Living, was at the heart of his talk that blended the academic with the personal.
Since then I have been a student of mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) and two years ago was pleased to discover that the UMass Memorial Health Mindfulness Center (https://www.ummhealth.org/center-mindfulness)was providing virtual mindfulness classes. Kabat-Zinn’s original program started by the UMass Stress Reduction Clinic in the 1970’s was now open to an even wider geographical group through this online technology.
The benefits of mindfulness include a lowering in stress. Here are some FAQ’s about the impact of a mindfulness practice on one’s life: https://www.ummhealth.org/umass-memorial-medical-center/services-treatments/center-for-mindfulness/faqs#:~:text=Mindfulness%20is%20a%20practice%20of%20present%20moment%20awareness.,aware%20of%20ourselves%20and%20the%20world%20around%20us.
The UMass Mindfulness Center also offers a free online meditation group, the CFM Global Online Meditation Community, during the week in the evenings.
I did some digging to see what other mindfulness offerings are online. Here’s a sampling:
England’s Oxford Mindfulness Foundation (https://www.oxfordmindfulness.org/free-online-mindfulness-course-sessions/) has a variety of online programming available.
Mindfulness on the job and in parenting are offered by The Greater Good Science Foundation at the University of California, Berkeley:(https://ggsc.berkeley.edu/who_we_serve/parents_families#.YtAdIU2qmho.link).
The Mindfulness Meditation: The Path to Wisdom and Success course is free on Alison (https://alison.com/dashboard?utm_source%3Dalison_user%26utm_medium%3Daffiliates%26utm_campaign%3D15204934). Alison also offers mindfulness certificates.
Coursera has several course offering in the practice of everyday awareness: (https://www.coursera.org/courses?query=mindfulness)
No matter where you look, there are now multiple opportunities to become richer in this daily practice. As Kabat-Zinn said, “You can’t stop the waves, but you can learn to surf.” So start surfing through these wonderful options.
This piece used with permission and appeared originally on H.A. O’Shaughnessy’s Medium blog. https://medium.com/@oshaughnessy2018/mindfulness-to-go-39bb4157c392