The Student News Site of Passaic Academy for Science and Engineering

Mindfulness in High School

Fill your mind with mindfulness

October 6, 2021

 

We believe that students should learn about meditation and mindfulness in high school as a means of increasing overall happiness. Many times the people who appear the happiest from outside may not be happy internally and could be just pretending to hide their pain. This article about mindfulness and meditation is meant to promote internal happiness. If you can achieve internal happiness, you can be confident enough to say “I lived a good life”. Rather than starting later, beginning mindfulness and meditation as soon as possible, woven into the curriculum,  will make it easier to pass through the bumpy road of life. 

Can you believe that “general wellness is the number one reason people give for meditating?” (see the image below). General wellness could translate to happiness as well because if all is well within you, then you are balanced and happy. To begin with, mindfulness and meditation help people lower stress levels in school and in life. By allowing students to hone the skills to stay in the moment, schools can prepare students for life.  Meditation gets rid of stress, negative thoughts, and all types of negative energy that surrounds us. “Usually our minds are full of thoughts. We are constantly planning, reflecting, wondering, or worrying about the future. Imagine what we could achieve if we could give our minds a break from these patterns.” Thus, after meditation, students will be able to get back to work with a fresh and calm mind. A Havard Research story by Grace Tatter revealed that “sixth-graders who participated in an eight-week mindfulness were less stressed out than their classmates who hadn’t.” If meditation can help students as young as 6th graders, it should probably be effective on high school students as well. As students will clear their minds from negative thoughts, they will have improved self-esteem because now without the stress, they can handle situations that first they thought were overwhelming. Moreover, students will be able to avoid depression and negative behaviors from mindfulness because it teaches us to let go of negative emotions thereby keeping ourselves positive. The Harvard story also reported that after a week of mindfulness and meditation, students experienced greater self-control, which means that students won’t become frustrated and would not completely give up when stressed. This positive attitude will lead to skills such as resilience and gratitude which correlate with a persons happiness.

Mindfulness and meditation help us take care of ourselves since we only get one shot at life, it is important that we give our physical and mental health some break. This means that students can be trained to take on the academic pressure of our Science Academy. In addition, mindfulness practices help to spark creativity and new ideas because it allows us to reach the state of creativity where we are relaxed and inspired. Roberto and Sharlynn here feel better when they practice mindfulness before their soccer and tennis games. Parth here uses mindfulness to prepare him mentally for any test or big exams.

Credit: (Thegoodbody.com, 2021)

Studies have shown that “8 in 10 Americans experience stress in their daily lives and have a hard time relaxing their bodies and calming their minds, which puts them at high risk of heart disease, stroke, and other illnesses”. Some people don’t really pay attention to their own health issues due to stress such as financial payments that keep their mind out of perhaps this life-saving technique. Implementing mindfulness and meditation can eventually benefit your own health as it promotes self-care and productivity on top of calming your mind. It eventually comes up in great use when trying to focus or resolve a conflict. Taylor Rush, Ph.D. shared that “Since beginning my mindfulness practice 10 years ago…  I observe my physical, emotional, and cognitive reactions (they have not miraculously disappeared), but they no longer short-circuit my brain. I am able to opt for a more adaptive response to the situation.” When trying to solve a conflict, you have to be aware of how you’ll react and enhance your future response. Indicating that it may take you a certain amount of time to say something than to react without thinking clearly, which concentrating on your behavior and wording can eventually project into a more respectful manner.

Not only do mindfulness and meditation practices help emotional wellness, but they also help achieve social wellness. Meditation and mindfulness allow us to approach the present with curiosity and openness. When we meditate, we can feel what is going on around us which makes us more open and accepting in our relationships. “In each moment lies hundreds of lessons waiting to be learned, and mindfulness brings us closer to unearthing them.” Furthermore, meditation makes you feel more comfortable with being uncomfortable. 

The experience of spirituality can be felt with the practice of mindfulness and meditation. Mindfulness and meditation take us away from the existence of the body and focus on the mind and soul. This practice can help us as individuals to find a sense of peace and purpose.

With all the reasons mentioned in this article, it is critical that we make space for mindfulness and meditation in our life as a way of increasing happiness in high school and life.

References

“5 Facts about Mindfulness for Better Mental Health.” Resources To Recover, 10 Apr. 2018, www.rtor.org/2018/04/05/5-facts-about-mindfulness/.

“24 Meditation STATISTICS: Data and TRENDS Revealed for 2021.” The Good Body, 28 May 2021, www.thegoodbody.com/meditation-statistics/.

Lazaridou, Asimina, and Panagiotis Pentaris. Mindfulness and Spirituality: Therapeutic Perspectives . Harvard Medical School, https://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/15810/1/15810_Pentaris_Mindfulness%20and%20spirituality%20(AAM)%202016.pdf.

Tatter, Grace. “Making Time for Mindfulness.” Harvard Graduate School of Education, 23 Jan. 2019, www.gse.harvard.edu/news/uk/19/01/making-time-mindfulness.

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