How a mindfulness-based approach can treat social anxiety disorder

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Guided Meditations for Stress Reduction (MP3) by Bodhipaksa is available here!
Jeena Cho, Forbes: Social anxiety disorder (SAD) is an extreme fear of being judged, criticized or rejected in social situations. Fear of social criticism and rejection is a developmentally normal aspect of adolescence. However, when it interferes with the young person’s ability to engage in normal activities like school or personal interests, then professional help may be indicated. In adults, this fear may not become resolved. Over time, social anxiety can severely restrict a person’s living experience, limiting their ability to remain employed or form healthy relationships.

SAD typically begins around age 13, but …

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How mindfulness reduces stress and improves health

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Available now: Guided Mindfulness Meditation (Series 1) from Jon Kabat-Zinn
Heather Goldstone, WCAI: In 1971, Jon Kabat-Zinn finished his Ph.D. in the laboratory of Nobel Laureate, Salvador Luria, at M.I.T. Then, he took what might be considered a left turn – he went to study with Buddhist masters. Several years later, he drew on both his training in both biology and Buddhism when he founded the Stress Reduction Clinic at U. Mass. Medical School and created the first course in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction.

“It seems like ‘wow, what a gigantic shift from molecular biology to Buddhist meditative practices,'” says Kabat-Zinn. “But it wasn’t so much …

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The wake-up call that transformed neuroscientist Richard Davidson’s life

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Check out Meditations to Change Your Brain, by Rick Hanson PhD & Richard Mendius (3CDs)
Rebecca Shapiro, Huffington Post: Richard Davidson had been studying the brain for more than a decade when he was asked a question that quite literally changed his life.

“Why have you been using the tools of modern neuroscience just to study anxiety and stress and fear and depression?” Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama, asked the neuroscientist in 1992. “Why can’t you use those same tools to study kindness and compassion?”

The question, which Davidson described as “a total wake-up call,” caused him to refocus his research. One of the first …

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Mindful leaders are effective leaders

May 3, 2016

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In June, the Director of the National Centre for Strategic Leadership, Nigel Girling, will be running a free webinar raising awareness about and talking through some approaches to mindful leadership. The following post was provided by the organizers of the webinar.

We live in a world of unprecedented pressure to be productive, complete tasks and stay in constant contact. For leaders, this can lead to a working environment that is fragmented by thousands of distractions and disparate demands. Attention spans are, unsurprisingly, becoming shorter as leaders struggle to find their way through this minefield.

It might all sound a bit hippy and New Age, but mindfulness might be just what leaders need at this point.… Read more »

Three ways meditation improves relationships – backed by science

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Available in our store: The Neurobiology of “WE”: How Relationships, the Mind and the Brain Interact to Shape Who We Are, by Daniel J. Siegel
Emma M. Seppälä, Psychology Today: Meditation can seem like a lonely activity, even a slightly selfish one —after all, you’re doing something, on your own, for yourself – or so it seems. Even if you’re meditating in a group, your eyes are closed and you’re focused on yourself. Doesn’t seem like something that would improve your relationships. But research shows it does. Here’s how.

1) It Curbs Your Stress & Gives You Perspective

Most people experience stress during the day. Worse yet …

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How to practice mindfulness throughout your work day

April 13, 2016
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Check out Guided Meditations for Busy People (MP3)
Rasmus Hougaard, Jacqueline Carter, Greater Good Science Center: You probably know the feeling all too well: You arrive at the office with a clear plan for the day and then, in what feels like just a moment, you find yourself on your way back home. Nine or ten hours have passed but you’ve accomplished only a few of your priorities. And, most likely, you can’t even remember exactly what you did all day. If this sounds familiar, don’t worry. You’re not alone. Research shows that people spend almost 47 percent of their waking hours thinking about something …

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How meditating in a tiny Iowa town helped me recover from war

April 8, 2016
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Find Guided Meditations for Stress Reduction (MP3) here
Supriya Venkatesan, Washington Post: At 19, I enlisted in the U.S. Army and was deployed to Iraq. I spent 15 months there — eight at the U.S. Embassy, where I supported the communications for top generals. I understand that decisions at that level are complex and layered, but for me, as an observer, some of those actions left my conscience uneasy.

During my deployment, a few soldiers and I were awarded a short resort stay in Kuwait. There, I had a brief but powerful experience in a meditation healing session. I wanted more. So when I returned to the …

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A truly shocking reason to meditate

February 19, 2016
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Check out these Guided Meditations for Stress Reduction
Tim Brownson, A Daring Adventure: Next week I am going on a meditation retreat for 3 days.

It’s only the second time I have ever been on a retreat and the last time three years ago I made a bit of a fool of myself (read more here for the full, rather embarrassing story), although I still had a great time.

Even though I’d been meditating for 7 or 8 years I’d rarely sat for more than 30 minutes at a time and 20 minutes was probably a closer average before that retreat.

Rather strangely I was a tad stressed on …

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Calming the teenage mind in the classroom

February 8, 2016
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Click here for Mindfulness Meditations for Teens, by Bodhipaksa
Kelly Wallace, CNN: At the start of the school year at Marblehead High School in Massachusetts, students started moving their desks out of the way, grabbing a mat and laying down on the floor for guided meditation before French class. Lexxi Seay, a senior, was skeptical.

“I actually never believed really in meditation. … I thought it was a joke,” she said during an interview.

That all changed one day back in September. While she was on her computer working and everyone else in her class was meditating, she just fell asleep sitting up. “When I …

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Mindfulness: the craze sweeping through schools is now at a university near you

January 26, 2016
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2016: A Year of Waking Up!
Harriet Swain, The Guardian: Slowly take a raisin and examine every wrinkle and fold of its surface. Feel its texture with your fingers. Inhale its scent. Squeeze it and hear how it sounds. Raise it to your lips, place it in your mouth, explore it with your tongue. Prepare to chew. As you bite into it, notice the bursts of taste and how these change, and be aware of when you feel ready to swallow. Finally, feel the raisin travel into your body.

This is a common introductory exercise in mindfulness – a practice derived from Buddhist meditation that involves paying attention to the …