What is mindfulness?
Mindfulness is the state of being fully engaged in the present moment.
This sounds relatively easy and the concept itself is quite simple, but think about it: how often are you thinking about the past or planning for the future? Particularly when you feel angry, depressed, anxious, or worried... do you feel those emotions more when you are thinking about the present moment or when you are ruminating over past events or nervous about what might happen in the future?
What can mindfulness do for you?
The brain is incredibly malleable and can be trained to change it's anatomy (particularly the size of different brain regions) and physiology. A mindfulness practice can alter your brain to make it easier for you to be happy, less stressed, experience less pain and be effected less by negative thoughts and emotions.
How do you practice mindfulness?
The most common way to practice mindfulness is through guided meditation. There are great apps available for this including Headspace, Calm and Insight Timer. Youtube videos can also be helpful (search for "guided meditations for mindfulness" and go through until you find one that resonates). This website from local Austin psychologist, David Zuniga, also has great resources to get you started.
Mindfulness breathing techniques: