skip to Main Content

First steps into mindfulness

To tame my ever-wandering mind and try to find focus and concentration, I’ve decided to try out mindfulness and meditation.

In the PhD course which I am currently attending, every session involves a mindfulness exercise. Initially I was a bit surprised to find mindfulness to be part of a course for PhD students, but now all the participants of this course agree that they look forward to the guided mindfulness sessions in the course.

Outside of this course, I have never practiced mindfulness. Today, I decided to look on-line for a guided mindfulness exercise. I came across this exercise and enjoyed it very much.

Since this is the first time I practice such an exercise with guided audio, I’ve noticed a few differences between this and a guided exercise in a group setting. I need to practice more, but I am inclined to think that solitary exercises suit me more. This, however, is completely my personal experience and I am sure many people benefit from mindfulness and meditation courses offered by skilled instructors.

The observations I made are the following:

– My thinking, now while I am writing this post, is much clearer. I did not navigate away from this site yet to go and click around on other websites, even though I see new Twitter and Facebook alerts.

– I have a cold, and I could clearly feel how this impairs my breathing. I’d like to think that it’s just a cold and can work through like normal, but with my body doing a little bit more effort with every breath I take, I realize I should take it easy the coming weekend and focus on conquering this cold.

– The position of my head and shoulders mattered. Hanging shoulders and a hanging head made my breathing speed up and feel less free. I clearly felt how much better my body and breathing feels when I sit up straight, with straight shoulders and my head upright and proud. While I sometimes go into a position with hanging shoulders and a curved back to “relax” or show my respect/inferiority to another person, it feels as if my natural relaxed position is upright and proud of myself.

– I need to practice more to get my thoughts under control. However, I am hoping that regular practice (I am scheduling time for this in my planner), will result in a clearer mind.

My next planned session is scheduled for Sunday, and I hope I will enjoy it as much as I enjoyed this exercise.

Share with your peers!
This Post Has 4 Comments
  1. Thanks for this reassuring post. I am also trying to practice a little mindfulness meditation each morning using Jon Kabat Zinn CDs to guide me. I felt a little embarrassed to admit that to anyone at uni though! I am reading some philosophy at the moment which is relevant to, but not quite my core and comfortable subject of literacy education. I find my mind wanders all the time when I try to slog through the philosophers. I'm trying to gain more control over this brain malfunctioning & hope the meditation will assist.

  2. I wish you lots of success with the mindfulness practice.I can relate to your feeling slight embarrassment as some people might consider it too aetherial for a \”real\” scientist, but I've decided for myself that I don't really care what others might think of my practice – what really matters is that I find a way to regain my focus, and get some good work done.Hope you can find some encouragement in this 🙂

  3. Came across your blog while looking for study aids targeted for PhD students. Very insightful and definitely useful posts. Keep it up!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back To Top

Free Templates for your Research

Sign up here to get access to worksheets for your research that help you have more efficient meetings, reflect on your work, and plan your month. Suitable for anyone from Master’s thesis students to full professors!