"Those that know do, those that understand teach." Aristotle
We are thrilled to see the growing popularity of both meditation and mindfulness. Not only has science proven that meditation boosts your health (increasing your immune system while decreasing inflammation), but it also boosts your happiness, your self-control and your ability to better connect with others, which, in turn, makes you more likely to live longer. Additionally, the latest research shows that meditation practices actually increase the amount of gray matter in your brain as well as “cortical thickness” (a key feature of individuals who are able to pay attention and focus longer).
And, when it comes to mindfulness, science has proven through numerous studies that it is a powerful natural way to reduce stress, improve your memory, and have happier relationships and overall satisfaction in life. All of these tremendous, science-backed benefits are causing more people than ever to show interest in learning how to do it - and how to teach it. While it’s exciting to see, this surge of growth is also a bit unsettling.
There are so many opportunities to be misguided by information or mislead by less experienced teachers and so-called “experts”. Yes, more people should be meditating and, yes, everyone can benefit from the teachings of mindfulness. However, understanding basic principles or going through a “training” to become a meditation or mindfulness teacher is rarely enough. The nuances of both meditation and mindfulness are not something that can be taught online or through apps. They also aren’t something that teachers can pick up in just a few months (or even a few years) of training.
In order to reap the real benefits of meditation and mindfulness practices, you absolutely must work with a dedicated professional. Meditation is not a one size fits all technique. Everyone is different and will relate to certain styles and will be more likely to adapt the process and integrate meditation into their life if the technique is tailored for them.
Even if you don’t have an expert trainer in the area that you can train with in person, individually or in a small group, master teacher AnJenette Afridi, MA offers individual and/or group meditation and mindfulness targeted skills-based training live online via video conferencing or FaceTime. The benefit of doing this type of live training is that AnJenette will tailor a meditation and mindfulness program specifically for you, and give you real-time, personalized feedback, something that no app or recorded video can do.
Being discerning before allocating your time and money on a less-than-qualified teacher or an ineffective method of training is key to getting the most out of these powerful practices.
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This article is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any medical issue or disease. The author does not in any way guarantee or warrant the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of this article and will not be held responsible for the content of this article. The information in this article is not intended to replace a personal relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. Always consult your personal health care provider for specific medical advice.