MINDFULNESS AND ART THERAPY

Mindfulness Exercise:

Hold a banana.

Slowly peel the banana.

Taste your banana.

Look at your banana.  

Smell your banana.  

Experience your banana with all of your senses.

Pay attention to the sensations within your body as you eat your banana.

Enjoy the present moment.

Breathe.

Being mindful is to fully experience each moment as it comes, without anticipation, or worry or fear.  Focusing on the breath and how the body feels right at this moment is a path towards mindfulness.  All activities can be approached mindfully, but for most of us, this requires some practice.  In our busy, scheduled lives, it is not easy for us to allow each moment to unfold without expectation.  For many of us, it is helpful to participate in some kind of activity that allows us to experience mindfulness.

Making art requires full immersion and full participation in the present moment.  We cannot create art in the past or in the future. When we engage completely in a single activity that is intricate enough to require our full attention, we can achieve a state of flow. Meditation, yoga, swimming, cooking, writing, music, are some other activities that require focus and full awareness.  Participating in mindful activities has many benefits including effective stress and pain management, increased immune response and deep relaxation.

The principles of Mindfulness are simple and easy to learn. Regular practice is important to realize the benefits of mindfulness.

To learn more about Mindfulness, you can visit the following recommended sites: