If you spent 2014 dismissing mindfulness as just some new age fad, you’re missing out on the discovery of a centuries-old practice that holds the power to significantly improve your fitness, health, and mental well being.
Regardless of religious beliefs or spiritual practices, all of humanity can collectively nod in the direction of simply understanding more about why we do what we do.
As the fast pace of Moore's law further proves itself, modern society is slowly manifesting a cultural backflow: a point when technological advances become more accepted and phased than abrupt.
This awareness is allowing us to take a step back, pull a deep breath, and reflect on what currently available technologies can stimulate increased mindfulness and new self-care practices in our lives.
What is mindfulness?
Mindfulness is a practice in which you focus entirely on the present moment. Your current feelings, thoughts, and sensations are accepted without judgment. The benefits of mindfulness can be transformational — mentally and physically, in personal and professional relationships, and in your understanding and acceptance of yourself.
With this information at the tips of our fingers, and stress at an all time high, it is clear that simply knowing the health benefits of mindfulness isn't always enough to create the necessary spark of action to practice.
How can mindfulness drive tangible self-improvement?
Mindfulness practice is being employed in psychology to alleviate a variety of mental and physical conditions, including obsessive-compulsive disorder, anxiety, and in the prevention of relapse in depression and drug addiction. It has gained worldwide popularity as a distinctive method to handle emotions.
Accelerating mHealth technologies now can create new behaviors over time via ‘gentle nudge' applications; inspiring possibilities for the future of our well-being.
The digital health movement is empowering and furthering enhanced self-care more and more each day, as the barriers to entry fade and the seamlessness of fitness wearables, mHealth, and smartphone applications allow easier lifestyle integrations.
Personal adoption of mindfulness applications create a strong framework for better choices in the end-user's subconscious mind. Who isn't interested in that?
Here are the 7 Best Mindfulness Apps for 2015:
A beautiful timer and journal for meditation. Its functionality (timers, logs, charts) and design support your meditation practice in an appropriately non-intrusive way.
Discover inner peace and emotional freedom with AWARENESS, a revolutionary new application that helps you learn to be grounded and peaceful in your day to day life.
10-minute meditation sessions, with the first 10 days available free of charge.
Scan a barcode of almost any product at the pharmacy or grocery store and SD tells you immediately which toxic chemicals it contains,
The Mindfulness App helps you to reduce stress and increase wellbeing. Scientific research proves that regular practice for 20 minutes a day brings desired effects.
Moves automatically tracks your everyday exercise, commuting and time spent in important places. Just carry your phone in your pocket or bag.
The folks over at www.fitbit.com were kind enough to give me the opportunity in early December to beta-test the 2015 Fitbit SURGE.
Check back in January for a full product review.
Whether you're interested in being a better parent, healthier spouse, or taking your athletic performance to the next level, advances in digital health tools and applications are here now to serve your best intentions.
You'll be surprised how much minding yourself shines light on and empowers those around you to do the same. The mirror of mindfulness is essential for evolutionary reflection.
What do you want to change?
Be the change you wish to see in the world. -Mahatma Gandhi
About the author: Josh Trent, NASM-CES, CPT, HLC, is a corrective exercise specialist and participatory sports technology expert with over 9 years in the fitness industry. His passion is to accelerate wellness evolution through the power of the Digital Health and Quantified Self movements. You can follow him on Twitter @wellnessforce, or through his website www.wellnessforce.com.
Questions? Start here