Learning how to be poised through mindfulness

Being resilient to stressors is crucial to responding constructively to life's challenges.

Have you ever been around a realist or wish you were more resilient and slow to respond to emotions or environmental triggers? Mindfulness can help build resiliency to stressors. Someone who is resilient has the ability to respond constructively. Having the ability to stay balanced or poised when life throws a curve ball is the ultimate challenge, but it also includes or applies to the smaller challenges that affect daily experiences. Resilience is useful, whether the challenge is small, or life changing and long lasting. In the book “Mindful Teaching and Teaching Mindfulness” by Deborah Schoeberlein, it states that mindfulness can help develop sensitivity, self-calming, manage suffering and recovering.

Mindfulness helps one develop ability to recognize sensory stimulation both within the body and outside or within the environment. If one practices noticing then they will notice if the stimulation is a challenge earlier and therefore have more time to prepare and respond. Mindfulness provides training and practice necessary to develop calming skills and slowing down your habitual reactions to certain types of situations. Intense anger, shutting down emotionally, negative thoughts or over thinking are common habitual patterns.

Practicing mindfulness is like having an inner body pause button. It helps you to slow down and take notice what is really happening. Mindfulness lets your thoughts catchup with your feelings to promote a balanced response. Schoeberlein states that this is the heart of resiliency. Mindfulness is a precursor of resiliency; how you manage emotional and physical suffering or pain. It is not about denial or dismissing. It is about directly experiencing comfortable and uncomfortable emotions and sensations as constructively as possible. It allows you to recognize the emotion or physical pain without letting it define you because you can see that things and experiences change over time. This practice then naturally helps people recover faster and return to normal or a balanced state.

Practicing mindfulness, in a gentile, non-judgmental state is not as easy as it sounds. Like anything, it takes a willing attitude and practice. Michigan State University Extension offers a basic community-based series entitled Stress Less with Mindfulness

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