Depression, anxiety, and obsessive compulsive disorders are all major concerns in our society amongst ourselves and our loved ones. Although there are a variety of frequently prescribed treatments for these mental health disorders, the treatments are often ineffective. Where I believe several of these treatment therapies fall short is failing to acknowledge the link between psychological distress (the mental disorder) and a general lack of mental awareness (mindfulness). Several treatments focus on trying to cure symptoms of the disease or disorder rather than addressing the root cause.
Often, the root cause of unhappiness, anxiety, depression, or compulsive behavior is letting the mind wander to the past or the future and then letting those thoughts consume you. For all behavior, there is a thought that has preceded the action or feeling. If you can learn to associate your psychological distress to a specific thought pattern, you can through practice, develop a new relationship to these thoughts and modify the behavior, eliminating the distress.
This practice that I am experienced in teaching is a form of Mindfulness-Based Awareness Building. This type of practice includes breath-work, meditation, and Yin Yoga, all focused on the cultivation of mindfulness. Mindfulness is defined as “paying attention in a particular way on purpose in the present moment and non-judgmentally”.
Through this type of mindfulness practice, a person can learn to separate themselves from their thoughts. They will learn to become an observer of their thoughts, and overtime, how to respond to those thoughts from a state of full awareness rather than immediate reaction. They also learn to breakup their obsessive thoughts by becoming “awake” or aware so that they no longer reach the point of compulsive behavior. In essence, an individual that is suffering with a mental health condition learns a variety of tools they can use to become more mindful, harness wandering thoughts, and self-heal.
International Yoga Trainer,