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Monday, October 22, 2007

Mindfulness meditation catches on in the workplace: Beaded hippies nowhere in sight

In Toronto’s Globe and Mail, Patrick White offers a look at the use of mindfulness meditation by executives, to get control of job stress:
cities across Canada, mindfulness classes are overbooked with stressed professionals searching for a path to increased focus and decreased stress.

The trend has caught the interest of academics. Researchers have found that prolonged mindfulness meditation eases stress, aggressive behaviour, cardiovascular problems, pain and depression.

About time they noticed. Meditation is way better for you than another cup of ruddy awful coffee.
In one study, neurologists at Massachusetts General Hospital found that meditation actually alters the construction of the brain. Comparing the brains scans of meditators with a control group, they found thickened cortical walls surrounding the regions of the brain responsible for attention and sensory processing.

Last year, University of Toronto scientist Tony Toneatto found that nursing students who were able to maintain a state of mindfulness had fewer symptoms of stress and anxiety.

Excellent article, despite the continual need to stress that the beaded hippies are nowhere in sight. (Can’t remember when I last saw one, anyway. )

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