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    Can Mindfulness Make Me Happier?

    At times, can you hear a judgmental voice when you don’t live up to your own expectations? Do you hear yourself judging others as well? We all struggle with judgments at times. We may think that we will inevitably fail or that underneath we are not good/smart enough. Like many, we are constantly in thought about how we could have done or said something better; focusing our energy on the past or future instead of the present. Our judgmental thoughts often feel like facts, making us believe the negative messages that are attached to them.

    Although it is important to hold standards for yourself, it’s equally important that you remain in control of your thoughts so that you can better control your emotions versus having your emotions control you. Remember that you are able to turn down the volume of that judgmental voice. Without control,  it can lead to severe doubt, feelings of worthlessness, ongoing negative emotions, shame and feeling disconnected from those around you.

    Insecurities and fears about the past and future can make it challenging to appreciate the present moment or situation. Your perspective and experience are subjective and heavily influenced by your emotional state. Making decisions can become stressful and emotions can become overwhelming when your mind is racing and you are uncertain about how you feel. The key is learning how to slow down and pay attention to the present moment so that you are not needlessly ruminating about the past or future.

    With the help of our trained therapists at Pathways Counseling Services, you can learn to observe your thoughts and feelings without judging them as good or bad. Mindfulness is a tool that allows you to be more aware of your physical and emotional conditions without getting wrapped up in self-criticism and judgement. 

    Mindfulness is frequently practiced in meditation and several types of therapy. There are many positive benefits to becoming more mindful such as reducing harmful thinking, lowering stress levels, protecting against depression and anxiety. It can also decrease migraines and chronic pain, decrease bias towards others, increase empathy, improve social connections and increase positive emotions. So in essence, yes, mindfulness can make you happier. The key is regular practice daily or as often as possible. Even 10 short minutes of mindfulness practice every day has the ability to have a remarkable impact on one’s life.

    Living mindfully goes beyond eating healthy, getting regular exercise and sleeping well. Although those are great tools towards a healthy lifestyle, it’s vital to keep your mind in a healthy place too. 

    Pathways Counseling Services based in Scottsdale, Arizona, provides mindfulness treatment through individual counseling and group sessions. Our counselors help individuals develop the tools they need to deal with their distress and destructive behaviors in a healthy way. If you feel mindfulness is the positive step forward that you have been looking for, we encourage you to call us at (480)235-1682 or schedule an appointment online. We look forward to assisting you and your loved ones on your individual paths.