Does mindfulness meditation really work
MBSR: With mindfulness against stress
What is MBSR?
MBSR stands for "Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction". The meditation technique was developed by the US scientist Jon Kabat-Zinn in the 1970s. It is based on traditional types of meditation, but dispenses with a spiritual superstructure. The effectiveness of the standardized exercises has been proven many times over in studies.
How does the meditation technique work?
In usually eight sessions, which are led by specially trained teachers, the practitioners get to know different meditation techniques. They feel for an aroma, for example, concentrate on their breath or try to calmly observe their own thoughts and to perceive their body better. The goal is self-knowledge, inner harmony and calm.
With the “body scan”, for example, one directs one's attention one after the other to each individual area of the body, feeling the sensations that occur, if possible without evaluating them. In "sitting meditation" you focus on every breath, let thoughts, feelings and body sensations pass you by. In the “walking meditation” exercise, on the other hand, it is important to consciously concentrate on the perception of movement and take deep, calm breaths.
What does mindfulness-based stress reduction bring?
Brain researchers have shown that meditation can change the activity in areas of the brain over the long term, regulating emotions, the ability to concentrate and the physical feeling. MBSR is considered to be particularly effective: stress is reduced, sleep improves. The mind should come to rest and a serene relaxation should set in. Those who exercise regularly can also cope better with illnesses and pain, such as chronic back problems, and thus move more.
Who is MBSR for?
If you want to do something for your mental health or want to find a better way to deal with pain, but have little knowledge of esotericism or religion, you are at the right place at MBSR. The program is based on traditional meditation techniques that have been standardized and scientifically tested for their effectiveness. The focus is on training the mind. If you want to do something for your body above all, you should (additionally) choose another procedure.
You can find more about MBSR and a course database at the Association of Mindfulness Teachers. Health insurances subsidize courses under certain conditions.
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