I was interested to hear the chat about Headspace in the last episode.
I first heard about mindfulness from my long haired brother whilst sat in his flower covered caravan at a folk festival… I laughed and told him it sounded like a load of bollocks.
A year or so later I heard about Headspace (not making the connection at the time) on some tech podcasts and feeling like my head could do with being a bit less full I thought I’d give it a try. I was hooked after a few sessions and listened to all 10 of the free sessions several times (you can do that).
Then I persuaded some family members to buy me an annual subscription as a Christmas present and have been using it (on and off) since. I’ve racked up about 14 hours of meditation so far, moving on from the basic sessions to more targeted things like improving my focus. I’d say that although it can be hard to “find” time for it and it’s not something I’m naturally very good at, I see it as a good investment. After I’ve meditated I find I’m more focused and more productive, and I would argue happier.
Unfortunately for me when I made the connection that Headspace was actually the same mindfulness meditation my brother had told me about in his caravan I had to eat my words, along with a slice of humble pie.
Outside of my own experience, my fiancée is a Clinical Psychologist for the NHS and she actually now teaches basic mindfulness sessions and recommends it to her patients, sometimes including Headspace because it makes the techniques so bitesize and accessible. It turns out that mindfulness-based cognitive therapies are actually recommended by NICE as treatments for a range of depression and anxiety related problems, I assume backed by clinical trials. It might be something that Buddhists have known about for thousands of years, but there’s now actually scientific evidence to suggest it has real psychological and even physiological benefits.