Interest in mindfulness has increased exponentially in recent decades in academic and clinical contexts. The psychological construct of mindfulness refers to an awareness that emerges by intentionally paying attention to the present experience in a non-judgmental way (Jon Kabat-Zinn, 2003).
In other words, a “mindful” mind brings together attentional and attitudinal features at the same time, self-regulating attention towards present-moment direct experiences and attitude in a non-judgemental tone towards internal and external phenomena (physical, affective and behavioral).
This particular quality of non-evaluative awareness can improve one´s physical and psychological health status, and therefore several approaches generally called “mindfulness-based interventions” (MBIs) have been developed and tested in the last 40 years.
Evidence about MBIs´ efficacy and effectiveness in improving mindfulness and health is rapidly accumulating, and they have been studied in a variety of settings and populations, including people with cancer diagnoses, anxiety, depression, chronic pain, heart disease and other related “stress” disorders , as well as in individuals considered “healthy”, but with high levels of “stress”, potentially including health professionals, athletes and general population.
The Center “Mente Aberta” (“Open Mind “) has a mission to promote and disseminate MBIs in Brazil, focusing on their Practices, Professional Training, and Scientific Research.
The Center is a Community Service Program of the Federal University of São Paulo (UNIFESP), and follows the guidelines of the British Network of Mindfulness Teachers (UK Network for Mindfulness-Based Teacher Training Organisations) accessible at: www.mindfulnessteachersuk.org.uk
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