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Mindfulness Is NOT a Relaxation Technique

Mindfulness is not about relaxation. It is a method for self-discovery and change. And yes, sometimes one or even many of your sessions may be relaxing but it is not the goal.

Sadly, it’s a fad now and people slap any label on it and claim it can cure almost anything. But that is far from the truth and does do it disfavor.

Anyhow.

Imagine your friend, let’s call her Susan, has a stressful time and is looking for something helping to relieve it. She read in a magazine that mindfulness helps to relax and find peace.

She skimmed the internet and found the same points. Assuming now mindfulness might fix her stress problem and visiting a mindfulness session or buying a guided meditation now.

Now she’s a few minutes in her first breathing exercise and suddenly, some long lost bad memories of the past pop up and make her extremely uneasy.

Maybe something tiny, maybe something huge. Who knows.

Maybe she cries, maybe not.

In the end, she feels uneasy, anxious, and is waiting for it to be over. She could stop, sure, but many people don’t have the courage to stop and leave in a group session.

They rather sit there in their misery and wait until it is over.

But that is not the point. The point is, Susan did not experience any relaxation at all. Quite the opposite, it made her feel bad.

Do you think she will continue with mindfulness?

Probably not.

Would you?

If you look for ways to relax at the moment, mindfulness is the wrong tool. And meditation too. It’s like drilling a screw with a hammer.

If you want to build up your stress resilience or rebuild yourself, mindfulness is a great tool. But be aware that not every session is fluffy feelgood thingies.

Having others to talk to who went through similar experiences can help a lot. But that depends on your personal style. So, maybe the Inner Peace program is for you, maybe not.

One thing though, the program is not a replacement for psychotherapy and it will never be. If you need psychotherapy, and there is nothing to be ashamed of, visit a therapist near you and take one where your guts say yes…


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