By Kamilla Lymarenko ’17
Most students stress out about what will happen in the future rather than focusing on the present. This stress can affect a student’s overall behavior and performance. Mindfulness is a way for students to gain control of their own mind and block out any negative thoughts or feelings that try to bring them down.
Mindfulness training has numerous benefits and can really help students perform better and help others who are struggling. It also manages depression and anxiety, which believe it or not most high school students have. Mindfulness training overall boosts a student’s well being as well as empathy, self-compassion, emotional resilence, and tolerance. Scans show that mindfulness can actually change the way our brain functions.
“Every time I take a test I over think, and my mind wanders, and I end up just sitting at my desk and thinking about what would happen if I do bad,” said Susan Mordukhayeva ’17, “But I have to convince myself to be mindful and focus on the test I’m taking rather than the consequences after; it helps a lot.”
Mindfulness is thought of as a form of therapy. It is recommended by the Department of Health and also in the guidelines set down by NICE (National Institute for Clinical Excellence). There are a bunch of programs around the city and in schools that offer classes with teachers who help individuals’ master mindfulness. Most people think of it as a cheap, effective, and doable way to have a life free of stress. Even if a student doesn’t want to take a class he can always teach it to himself from books about mindfulness. Incorporating mindfulness into someone’s life can change it for the better, it can change their entire view of life.
Samantha Jade ’16 said, “ Most of my junior year I was worrying about have a good average and good sat score and wondering whether or not I was going to get into the college I wanted but I realized that I was just stressing myself out.”
Mindfulness is all about thinking , it can turn a bad day into a good one if one just stops and thinks for a bit. It’s a new way of being and experiencing life moment by moment. According to the article In Mindfulness, a Method to Sharpen Focus and Open Minds by Alina Tugend from the New York Times, mindfulness is practiced by elementary school students, doctors, and even prisoners because that’s how affective its proven to be. Tugend said, “ Mindfulness may not be the answer to every ill. But it may be the answer to some. And I’ll settle for that.”
Mindfulness is not something one can accomplish right away. It does take time and effort because changing a certain perspective on life is not easy. But in the end when life is stress free and better overall, one would be happy that time was spent on developing this skill.
Rochelle Shtutin ’17 said, “ I think mindfulness is a great way to make us more relaxed and I like the fact that it helps develop better social and emotional skills because having those skills can really improve our lives.”