Benefits of Embodiment, Mindfulness & Compassion

As a firm believer in the power of yoga to increase the quality of life, I am constantly on the lookout for research studies that support the practices I teach and love. I came across a 2022 study from the Well Center at Stanford. A survey of 19,743 individuals across three different global regions shows how practices that support embodiment, mindfulness, and the cultivation of compassion for the self and others increases well-being. One of the most fascinating details is that they increase well-being to a higher extent than physical activity.

What does this mean for our daily lives? Exercise is important but it isn’t always enough. What really enhances well-being is to take 5 minutes a day to pay attention to sensations of the body and the breath, 5 minutes a day to notice thoughts and emotions as they arise rather than getting caught up in them, and 5 minutes a day to practice compassion for ourselves and others.

Yoga easily offers us accessible ways to practice these well-being enhancers. If you are interested, I can help you find a way to incorporate practices of embodiment, mindfulness, and compassion into your life. It might even be fun. According to the study, the effects include an increase in emotional and physical resiliency, security and satisfaction, social and spiritual connectedness, as well as creative expression.

Painting above courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Sunset on the Sea by American born artist John Frederick Kensett 1972