Mindfulness Exercises For Beginners

Learn mindfulness with our free mindfulness exercises for beginners.

Releasing Grief And Bringing In The Positive

Releasing Grief And Bringing In The Positive

Releasing Grief & Bringing in the Positive. For times of grief, it can be helpful to allow what’s there to ...
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mindful life design

Your Free Mindful Life Blueprint

Mindful life design is a tool for creating a mindful life. Check out our mindful life design blueprint worksheet and ...
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Humor Therapy

Humor Therapy

Laughter enhances our quality of life. This mindfulness exercise includes a meditation that you can practice whenever you need humor ...
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Nature of Awareness, Big Mind Guided Meditation, Loving Humanity, seven factors of awakening

Hatred Never Ceases by Hatred

Hatred does not cease from hatred; hatred ceases by love alone. This is an ancient and eternal law. James Baraz ...
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Without and Within

Without and Within

Ajahn Jayasaro wrote this book Without and Within to introduce the practice of Buddhism and to elaborate on various topics ...
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Full Spectrum Mindfulness

Full Spectrum Mindfulness

A talk on full spectrum mindfulness. The video presents a great discussion on the waking-up practice, how it's done and ...
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Seeing With The Body [Video]

Seeing With The Body [Video]

Published on Dec 17, 2014A great Dhamma talk by Thanissaro Bhikkhu on how we cling to our suffering.One of the ...
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All 7 Chakras Healing Meditation Music

All 7 Chakras Healing Meditation Music

Music based on Indian Classical Raaga, this 50-minute track offers a unique sound for each Chakra. Meditate. Do your yoga ...
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sensing into your strongest experiences

Sensing Into Your Strongest Experiences

Here is your online worksheet:https://mindfulnessexercises.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/Sensing-Into-Your-Strongest-Experiences.pdf Instance 1 330 Mindfulness WorksheetsStep-by-step guidance for developing mindfulness for your health, relationships, career, meditation ...
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How to Cultivate Equanimity [Audio] Mindfulness of Speech

How to Cultivate Equanimity [Audio]

How to Cultivate Equanimity is an essential aspect of the spiritual path. Listen to this audio below. How to Cultivate ...
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Lessons from Nature

Learning From Nature

Have you ever found yourself immersed in the wonder and splendor of Nature? There are trees, for example, that are ...
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Coming To Your Senses

Coming To Your Senses

This "coming to your senses" guided meditation by Sean Fargo is the intermediate level of open awareness practice. This meditation ...
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Why You Are Not Depressed Stop It

Why You Are Not Depressed

A video talking about how you are just a witness to depression and what you can do in order to ...
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Basic Body Scan

Basic Body Scan

Tara Brach walks us through a basic body scan meditation. Feeling tense, anxious, or upset? A basic body scan is ...
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Jack Kornfield: Forgiveness Meditation

Jack Kornfield: Forgiveness Meditation

Practice forgiveness meditation by forgiving others and forgiving yourself. Let go of the past and opening your heart to each ...
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The Depths Of Who You Are By Eckhart Tolle

The Depths Of Who You Are

Life can never be destroyed. Knowing this enables us to look with deep compassion at the madness that happens on ...
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headache relief binaural beats

Headache Relief (Binaural Beat)

Binaural Beat for Headache Relief. Binaural beats are auditory illusion perceived by the brain when two different tones are played ...
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Meditations 3 by Thanissaro Bhikkhu

Meditations 3

When we look for happiness, we tend to look far away. Even when we're meditating, we tend to look far ...
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Noting Your Emotions

Noting Your Emotions

Kristin Neff leads a guided meditation Noting Your Emotions. It's a practice of noting whatever arises in the experience. First, ...
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are you controlling relationships

Are You Controlling Relationships

Here is your online worksheet:https://mindfulnessexercises.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/Are-You-Controlling-Relationships.pdf Instance 1 330 Mindfulness WorksheetsStep-by-step guidance for developing mindfulness for your health, relationships, career, meditation ...
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Sharing Gratitude – Meditation

Sharing Gratitude – Meditation

Feel the gratitude growing and becoming brighter and brighter with each beat of your heart as you do the sharing ...
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Reiki Music For Positive Energy Calming, Healing, Meditative Music

Reiki Music For Positive Energy

Relax and enjoy in your daily meditation by listening to this Reiki music to achieve positive energy that creates a ...
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mindfulness exercises

The Magic of Awareness – Talk

Anam Thubten talks about the gift of awareness and the hindrance of the ego. How this awareness can do magic ...
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Sylvia Boorstein

Cultivating The Heart of Inclusivity [Audio]

Cultivating The Heart of Inclusivity by Sylvia Boorstein:So, here’s a story. Sometime in the last decade, at the time of ___, ...
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sizing up your mechanical reactions

Sizing Up Your Mechanical Reactions

Here is your online worksheet:https://mindfulnessexercises.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/Sizing-Up-Your-Mechanical-Reactions.pdf Instance 1 330 Mindfulness WorksheetsStep-by-step guidance for developing mindfulness for your health, relationships, career, meditation ...
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Daniel Goleman Focus Flow Frazzle

Daniel Goleman: Focus, Flow, Frazzle

Daniel Goleman explains the relationship between performance and stress, focusing in particular on three concepts: focus, flow, and frazzle ...
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mindful eating with oranges

Mindful Eating With Oranges – A Mindful Eating Exercise

Here is your online worksheet: https://mindfulnessexercises.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/Mindful-Eating-with-Oranges.pdf Mindful Eating Exercise: Oranges Mindfulness is available to us each and every day.We often ...
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Meditation On Emptiness

Meditation On Emptiness

Gil Fronsdal leads a guided meditation on Emptiness. To experience calmness and stillness, and letting go of everything what you ...
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How To Take Charge Of Your Life

How To Take Charge Of Your Life

In order to take charge of your life, you need to be a player rather than a victim. Own your ...
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The Courage to Stay True

The Courage to Stay True

Qoya is based on the idea through movement, we remember. We remember our essence is wise, wild and free. Using ...
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Journaling

Mindful Journaling

This Journaling Mindfulness Exercise will guide you on how to reflect on some of the wonderful things that you are ...
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discovering my state of mind

Discovering My State of Mind

Here is your online worksheet:https://mindfulnessexercises.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/Discovering-my-State-of-Mind.pdf Instance 1 330 Mindfulness WorksheetsStep-by-step guidance for developing mindfulness for your health, relationships, career, meditation ...
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Beginning Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Techniques

Beginning Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Techniques

In a world of constant movement and excessive stress, beginning mindfulness based stress reduction techniques is a godsend. It can ...
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Meditations 2 by Thanissaro Bhikkhu

Meditations 2

Meditations 2. The Dhamma talks included in this volume were given during the evening meditation sessions, and in many cases ...
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Doubt mindfulness

Dealing With Doubt

Sharon Salzberg talks about Dealing with Doubt. Doubt can be intentionally cultivated and serve as an exploration of truth ...
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Overcoming Jealousy

Overcoming Jealousy

If you want to overcome jealousy, try these 3 ideas: determine where the feeling is coming from; remember your strength; ...
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Self-Compassion & Mindfulness Kristin Neff

Self Compassion & Mindfulness

In this video, Kristin Neff talks about self-compassion and mindfulness. She has developed an 8-week program to teach self-compassion skills ...
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Deep Breathing

Deep Breathing

Deep Breathing practices can influence your autonomic nervous system and relax your body, & improve your immune system. Why is ...
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You Are Worthy Freedom [Audio] by Bob Stahl

You Are Worthy: Freedom [Audio]

You Are Worthy: Freedom. Bob Stahl shares a story that leads to a sense of a shared world full of ...
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loving kindness meditation

Loving Kindness Meditation

This meditation is the loving-kindness meditation by Kristin Neff. It's meant to generate feelings of goodwill and kindness both for ...
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Being Positive

Being Positive

Being positive in your life with mindfulness exercises can help you to increase the ability to distinguish between positive or ...
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Why and How to Say Sorry [Video]

Why and How to Say Sorry [Video]

Whether it's work or a personal relationship, apologizing doesn't always come easily. Learn why and how to say sorry the ...
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Key to Stopping Self-Talk in the Head [Video]

Key To Stopping Self-Talk In The Head [Video]

Are you self-talking in the head? In this video, Eckhart Tolle says the key to stopping self-talk in the head ...
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Reflecting on a Role Model

Reflecting On A Role Model

Reflecting on a Role Model is mindfully important as it helps you envision how you want to be and the ...
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When to Follow Your Intuition

When to Follow Your Intuition

Follow your intuition based on these 4 planes: a level of trust; realm of positive growth; intuition operates best after ...
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Mindfulness for Beginners

Mindfulness is a term that often goes misunderstood. When we are new to meditation and mindfulness practices, we often mistake mindfulness to be something that we might eventually achieve after months, or even years, of training. However, mindfulness is not a state reserved for only the most advanced practitioners; it is an opportunity that continually presents itself in each unfolding moment. Mindfulness is simply the art of being aware, compassionately and openheartedly, in the face of whatever is present. It can be practiced by anyone, at anytime; there are no prerequisites required.

Understanding Mindfulness

Mindfulness has been around for centuries, with roots in various traditions and religions such as Buddhism and Hinduism. Though it has been practiced for thousands of years, it is now touching modern day societies across the globe at a rapid rate. As our world becomes more interconnected, word is spreading about these ancient techniques – and at the right time. As our world becomes busier and busier, we have never been in such dire need of these teachings.

Mindfulness is the moment-to-moment awareness of whatever our direct experience is. Our direct experience includes all of our senses, both inner and outer. As such, it encompasses thoughts and feelings that crop up in the mind, visceral bodily sensations, and sensations stirred by the environment around us. Mindfulness is a deep sense of presence and of paying attention. It is non-judgmental, compassionate observation of the present moment reality.

Common Misconceptions

While it is important to understand what mindfulness is, it is equally important to address all that this practice is not. There are a few myths about mindfulness that stand in the way of our fully understanding what this term refers to. As we begin to chip away at these misconceptions, we find ourselves moving closer to a deep awareness of what this practice really offers.

Myth #1 – Mindfulness is a way to relax.

In the initiatory stages of mindfulness practice, we often hit our first barrier when we realize how hard it is to relax! We might have thought that mindfulness is a gateway to relaxation, but while we might naturally learn to relax into it, mindfulness is not an active practice of relaxation itself.

Many mindfulness meditations and practices include relaxation exercises to help the mind settle down and to enhance our ability to be with whatever is present in the moment; however, relaxation is not synonymous with mindfulness. When we practice mindfulness techniques we are simply called to observe whatever is present; in any moment this might be a sense of relaxation or it might be the complete opposite. All is welcome and all is held in compassionate awareness.

Myth #2 – Mindfulness is the same as meditation.

Mindfulness can be a form of meditation, but it does not have to be. It is an awareness that can be practiced in any moment, whether we are sitting down to meditate, walking the dog, eating a meal, or engaging in a difficult conversation.

Similarly, not all meditations are mindfulness meditations. Meditation comes in many forms, from loving-kindness meditation to Osho dynamic meditation to breathing-centered meditations. Some forms might be considered mindfulness-based but not all of them are.

Myth #3 – Mindfulness is about stopping one’s thoughts.

In truth, mindfulness asks us to do the opposite of stopping our thoughts; mindfulness asks us to allow them. Allowing our thoughts is not the same as condoning their content or becoming swept away by them; instead, we can witness them in their simplest form without becoming enamored by their stories.

The same goes for rising emotions and bodily sensations. There is nothing beneath the lens of mindfulness that needs to be actively stopped. Many thoughts, feelings, and sensations will naturally cease to exist as we practice mindfulness, but it does not happen by force.

Myth #4 – The purpose of mindfulness is to find happiness, bliss, or contentment.

Mindfulness is not about seeking or striving for anything. Yes, moments of contentment or bliss may arise while we practice mindfulness techniques, but this is not the aim. Through mindfulness practice we open at the heart to whatever is present – the good, the bad, and the ugly – and gently unfastens all of these labels. Everything is welcomed.

The Benefits of Mindfulness for Beginners

After unraveling the myth that says mindfulness is all about finding happiness, we might start to wonder what the point of it all is. It can seem confusing since most advanced mindfulness practitioners and teachers speak about inner harmony, balance, and peace. To bridge the apparent gap we might say that while the purpose of mindfulness is not to achieve infinite happiness and peace (or in other words, not to be anywhere other than exactly where one is), it is certainly a practice that can help us to uncover the blocks that keep us from a peaceful and harmonious relationship with the world both inside and out.

In the beginning stages of practice, we might find that mindfulness techniques lead us to:

  • Begin inquiring about the root cause of our thoughts and beliefs,
  • Explore our emotional landscape with greater curiosity,
  • Make healthier life choices, whatever that may look like in each moment,
  • Slowly detach from relationships, substances, and habits that do not serve our greater wellbeing,
  • Communicate more compassionately and effectively,
  • Pursue hidden or neglected passions that add meaning or a sense of purpose to our lives.

The compounding benefits of mindfulness practice are infinite, starting from these initial inquiries and insights we begin opening up to. Once mindfulness practice becomes a more permanent fixture, the areas of our lives that can be positively influenced by this practice are endless.

Some of the benefits of mindfulness, no matter what stage of the journey one is in, include:

  • Stress, anxiety, and depression reduction
  • Emotional regulation and balance
  • Enhanced cognition
  • Reduction of pain perception
  • Increased empathy and compassion
  • Increased resilience
  • Heightened creativity
  • Increased sense of connection
  • Improved heart health

Mindfulness helps us to compassionately explore our entire being (mental, emotional, spiritual, and physical bodies included), offering us greater insight into the internal processes that are at work. As we get to know each of these bodies a little bit better, we gain insights and tools that we can then use to enhance our overall wellbeing. So mindfulness works not only directly but also indirectly, empowering and encouraging us to take charge of our wellbeing.

Three Simple Mindfulness Techniques for Beginners

As we begin our inquiry into what it means to live mindfully, we will undoubtedly come across various techniques and practices to enhance our understanding. From guided meditations and talks to worksheets and other exercises, the resources for exploring this new way of relating to oneself and the world are endless.

The following techniques are three simple mindfulness techniques you can practice on your own. They only take a few minutes but can be practiced at length as you become more comfortable with maintaining focused attention. For each of these exercises, it can be helpful to set a timer for five to ten minutes or longer to mitigate the tendency to check the clock. Once you are ready, come to a comfortable seated position with your back straight and your shoulders relaxed. You may be seated in a chair, on a meditation bench, or cross-legged on the floor. Your hands can rest in your lap or on your thighs. Gaze forward and then gently close your eyes.

Simple Breathing Meditation

  • Once you are settled, draw your awareness to your breath exactly as it is in this moment. Without manipulating or changing it in any way, simply observe its natural rhythm, flow, and depth. Observe any sensations that are present as your breath enters your body and as it exits.
  • Whenever the mind wanders simply draw your attention back to the breath. You can liken your breath to an anchor that can help to ground you into the present moment when thoughts arise.
  • Continue to observe the breath for the remainder of the time you have allotted for this exercise. Consistency is more beneficial than length, so choose a time that you can commit to practicing again and again.

Mindfulness of Emotions

  • When challenging emotions arise, bring yourself to a comfortable seated position and open your heart to your experience with curiosity and compassion.
  • As the emotion passes through you, first note its presence by labeling it as a separate entity. For instance, you might notice “anger is present,” rather than reaffirming, “I am angry.” Notice what else is there, perhaps “irritation,” “constriction,” or “confusion.” Again, observe these as energy bodies of their own, not as something that you own.
  • Tune into the body next by observing any observable sensations that are present. Compassionately and curiously scan the body for whatever might be there. You do not need to search for anything; let your experience show itself to you. Simply note what arises without judgment.
  • Continue this mindfulness practice for the allotted time. Notice how energy moves and shifts as you sit, coming and going as swiftly as ocean waves.

Simple Body Scan

  • This meditation can be performed while sitting comfortably or while lying flat on your back with a straight spine. Take a moment to adjust your posture so that it is entirely neutral.
  • Take a few breaths into the belly to gently ease the physical body. Once you are settled, begin a simple body scan by drawing your awareness to your toes. Hold your attention here for a few moments as you observe any sensations that are present.
  • After a few breath cycles, gently carry your attention to your lower legs, repeating the observation in the same way. Simply notice whatever your experience of this body part is.
  • Continue this practice as you ascend slowly through the body. After you have reached the very top of the head, hold the entire body in your awareness for one final observation. Are there any energy currents present? Any areas of tension or constriction? Any feelings of release?
  • Once you have completed the exercise, return to your breath for a few more moments of quiet observation or until your timer runs out. Slowly open your eyes and return to the world around you.

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