There are dozens of definitions of “mindfulness” in both academic and lay literature. Though it may be a difficult term to define precisely, mindfulness can be understood as a state of awareness of the present moment and of your physical, mental, and emotional states.
How can mindfulness help?
Research shows that incorporating mindfulness-based practices into your daily life can help with many of the problems that affect our society today, like stress, anxiety, panic attacks, depression, over-eating, PTSD, insomnia and sleep quality, anger, and even work/school productivity. Though meditation is a very effective mindfulness practice, there are many other ways.
I've tried to meditate, but I can't empty my mind.
Don't worry. Everyone starts there. Meditation is not about emptying your mind of all thoughts. It is about noticing your thoughts as they arise and then releasing them, instead of being highjacked by them.
Do I have to be a Buddhist to practice?
Mindfulness is not just for gurus - Most of the popular mindfulness practices these days come from vipassana, which is a Theravada Buddhism meditation practiced originated and practiced in Sri Lanka, Burma, Thailand, Cambodia, and Laos. But, practicing mindfulness in every day, including mindfulness meditation, is no longer an exclusive practice for monks and has been widely accepted and spread west of Asia. You can enjoy the practice without having any religious affiliation.
At Thrivemind, offers a variety of workshops on Mindfulness for beginners, busy professionals, and college students who seek to improve themselves and their lives through this practice.