Meeting those deadlines, attending classes, preparing for exams, striking the right balance between studies, job, and one’s personal life can be overwhelming! Each one of us has moments where we need to get respite from our daily worries, and more so, during this period when final exams are nearing. How to destress yourself and feel lighter at the end of day? The solution is right on campus – free workshops of mindfulness meditation practice at the Indiana University Health Center. Yes, you saw right – it is FREE!
You might wonder what does “mindfulness” really mean. Mindfulness, simply put, is used to refer to a state of awareness whereby people pay attention to the present moment. Rather seen as a form of meditation, mindfulness practice has been viewed as a cognitive therapy over the years by neuroscientists. Indeed, the numerous benefits of mindfulness practice are supported by research. A study by Davis & Hayes (2012) reported several advantages among mindfulness meditators, namely:
- Reduced rumination
- Better working memory capacity
- Fewer depressive symptoms
- Low stress level
- Decreased anxiety and negative emotions
- Enhanced working memory
- Relationship satisfaction
- Better focus
- Less emotional reactivity
And the list goes on …
At the time I am writing this article, I have already attended three of those mindfulness meditation sessions and I can personally vouch for some of these benefits listed herein. Since the past few days, I feel lighter, more positive, and in better control of my emotions. It seems the advantages of meditation vary from person to person, and depend on the length and duration of practice. Testimonials from other students in the meditation workshop have been: “I feel my brain has undergone through an internal massage” “I would rather do meditation than taking a nap when I am tired”, and “I feel at peace with myself.”
The meditation sessions are held every week on four consecutive days (Monday to Thursday), and each day has a specific time to fit in your schedule. The specific times of mindfulness meditation sessions can be found at this link here. The location is on the fourth floor at the IU Health Center. Dr. Carolyn Lee is in charge of mindfulness practice sessions, and she is an experienced provider of individual, couples, children, and family therapy as well. There is really no pressure put on any individual trying the meditation technique for the first time. In addition, the length of meditation can be increased steadily over time and it can be practiced at home, in the library, or at any place where you feel comfortable doing it.
If you are still reading at this point, just TRY the mindfulness therapy and let me know what your experience has been. I bet you won’t regret it!
Trishnee is a first year PhD student in the Department of Applied Health Sciences and her major is Health Behavior. She was born and raised in Mauritius and is currently having the best time pursuing her doctoral studies in the wonderful B-town. Her hobbies include cooking, reading romantic novels, and playing with her pets. Anything related to health highly interests her and she hopes to reach out to others on health-related issues that matter.
IUSPH Career Services
Job opportunities for Indiana University School of Public Health-Bloomington majors are diverse and expanding as the emphasis on living a healthy lifestyle grows around the world. Career Services experts in each of our academic departments will provide one-on-one counseling and career building opportunities throughout your academic career, from choosing the right major to developing a strategy to find a job. They can assist you with:
•resume and cover letter preparation
•graduate school preparation