By Dr Javed latoo
Mindfulness has lately become popular in the west even though it has been part of eastern civilisation and all major religions over many thousand years. More recently there have been studies to understand the benefits of the mindfulness in patients with both mental and physical health problems. Studies have shown it can be beneficial in anxiety, depression, insomnia and chronic pain. It is also known to improve general mental and physical well being in general population.
There are many mindfulness exercises now popular in the west that have been studied in various patient groups. Mindfulness is promoted by people of all backgrounds. It is impossible to cite the initial or original source of information as mindfulness has been part of all major religions in one or other form. I am sure the following exercise has been studied and promoted by various individuals including academics and I claim no credit for writing this exercise here.
In this popular mindfulness exercise, you focus on each part of the body one by one. We normally are not aware of physical sensations in various body parts as our mind is preoccupied with thousand things. A body scan exercise helps you to become aware of your body parts and various physical sensations we don't normally notice. By scanning through your body, you may feel relaxed and healed. This exercise can last up to 10 minutes. You need to focus on various parts of the body starting from feet and then progressively go on to ankles, lower legs, knees, thighs, hip, pelvis, lower back, upper back, lower abdomen, chest, left arm, right arm, shoulders, neck, face, head.
Steps of exercise
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