Mindfulness is an approach to therapy that involves bringing one’s full awareness to the present moment – accepting and opening to it, without getting caught up in the elaborative thoughts or emotional reactions that may arise. Mindfulness techniques are used to develop an awareness of passing events in the mind, rather than identifying with them or being drawn into these thoughts as necessarily true reflections of reality. By cultivating a moment-to-moment awareness, individuals begin to recognize the patterns in their thoughts, emotions and interactions with others.
Consistent and reliable scientific research is demonstrating that mindfulness is effective in reducing medical and psychological symptoms, including stress, depression, anxiety, fatigue, chronic pain, high blood pressure, GI disorders, skin disorders, fibromyalgia, and sleep disturbances.
Emily received a professional training under the direction of Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn, founder of the 8-week Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program. Emily has been practicing meditation for 15 years and spent several years developing her training in this area while living in Asia. She also researched and developed techniques related to the integration of mindfulness in couple and family therapy as part of her MSW at McGill University.
It is not necessary to practice meditation, yoga or hold any particular beliefs to benefit from this practice, as anyone can practice mindfulness.