My post on mindfulness and its applications to the writer’s life is posted on The Wild Writers site this week! Here’s an excerpt:
By Cheryl Reifsnyder
Lately, I’ve begun a practice of mindfulness meditation. I didn’t do it for the sake of writing, either, except in the general sense that when I’m healthier, happier, and less stressed, I’m better able to write. (Yes, it’s sad, but that’s how my mind works: I might not pursue healthy habits for the sake of being healthy, but in the name of writing, now, that’s another story….) I’m not talking about a religious practice here, but the type of meditation taught by the Stress Reduction Program at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. If you aren’t familiar with mindfulness meditation, I’d encourage you to read more about it, since research shows that the practice helps people combat stress and depression, cope with chronic pain and stressful situations, lower anxiety, and other useful stuff.
But as a writerly-minded person, I was particularly delighted to discover that mindfulness meditation has a number of benefits that apply directly to my writing life:
- It helps me to put other stresses aside when I sit down to write, so I can focus on the work at hand.
- It provides me with practice observing my physical and emotional reactions, giving me first-hand “research” to help create characters with rich and believable inner lives.