Mindfulness. You may have noticed the proliferation of this word in the media through social media and magazines. In recent times, especially as a response to increased work from home arrangements due to the Covid-19 pandemic, many organizations are exhorting their employees to practice this to prevent burnout.
In the maritime industry, where restriction of crew movements has placed considerable strain on the mental well-being of seafarers, there is a growing consensus that practicing mindfulness may benefit an often-overlooked aspect of mental welling of crew and contribute to positive stimuli and better mental health for crew onboard for sustained periods of time.
Yet this term may seem ambiguous to many. What exactly does this word entail? Is it prayer, or simply meditation? According to the Mayo Clinic, it is defined as a type of meditation in where the individual practicing it may experience intense focus and awareness of his or her emotions. This involves sensory involvement such as touch and smell and feeling. This removes the thought process, in that the individual removes all judgement and analysis in his or her current state. Mindfulness in its form includes breathing techniques, images and other exercises, which may be practiced in various forms.
An individual may face stress, anxiety and depression through exposure to various internal and external forces strains caused from events arising from both at work or home and interactions with day-to-day life. The personal space for which the individual may choose to reflect and investigate practicing mindfulness may be lacking in view of today’s fast paced society. Through mindfulness, it helps the individual rechannelled his energy and thought process to greater engage within the immediate environment and space. In simple words, to live for the moment.
In today fast paced society, we are focus more on worrying about future events and those which may be beyond our sphere to control or influence. Rather, practice mindfulness looks to individual to be present in the moment and cultivate discipline and positivity to focus on the present state of mind. The benefits of meditation have seen many positive benefits which can alleviate stress, depression, insomnia and high blood pressure.