Understanding Mindfulness Essay Example

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  6
Wordcount:  1501 Words
Date:  2022-10-19


Over the past decade, there has been an increase in the concerns about mindfulness and a growing interest in the ways of enhancing it. Numerous Psychological research and medical studies on the topic of mindfulness have been conducted to gain further insights into this area of interest. There has been a significant increase in the number of medical sites that offer interventions on mindfulness related issues and that seek to help those requiring assistance to tackle life concerns such as mental and physical health issues. Mindfulness clients also seek assistance to regulate errand behavior and to strengthen interpersonal relationships. This paper aims to write a critical thinking essay that will review the target article on understanding mindfulness and then present issues and arguments that have been raised in the commentary article. The paper will also include suggestions that will shape future research and analysis on the topic of mindfulness.

Is your time best spent reading someone else’s essay? Get a 100% original essay FROM A CERTIFIED WRITER!

Mindfulness is concerned with consciousness. The content and scope of consciousness have been of relative interest to psychologists and cognitive specialists. The most fundamental issues of consciousness include the thought process, emotions, and memory. The context of consciousness has been of relatively less importance and interest to the cognitive scientist as consciousness itself. The study of mindfulness has been a challenge to psychologists and also the effects of the quality of consciousness on the behavior of an individual. The article on the usefulness of mindfulness will be important in carrying out a literature review on this topic that has become of significant interest in recent years.

Target article

The article aims to address several critical concerns which include the definition and characterization of mindfulness. The definition of mindfulness is drawn from the developing literature on empirical psychology and other psychological traditions of ancient years. The article aims to compare and contrast the topic of mindfulness with other well developed and established theoretical works on attention and importance of awareness in our daily life. The other aim is to discuss the effects of mindfulness on human functioning and its impact on an individual's behavior. The article also aims to explain the positive effects of consciousness and lastly, the article aims to address the areas with obscurity and thus propose suggestions that can be used to further the research in mindfulness which is a developing subject of inquiry.

Several key concepts exist on the definition and characterization of mindfulness. According to the research work done by Brown and Ryan (2003), mindfulness is a state of paying focused attention and extra awareness to the present occurrences and experiences. Mindfulness is fundamentally concerned with the clear awareness of an individuals' reality that includes their thoughts, emotions, and actions at any particular moment in time. In simple terms, mindfulness is described as the process of paying attention to what is presently occurring in ones' life. Key features of mindfulness include its non-conceptual and non-discriminatory nature and its flexibility. The flexible nature of mindfulness means that it is possible to move back and forth between different states and situations according to present inclinations and circumstances (Brown, 2006). It is also possible to experience clear awareness to past occurrences and also have focused attention towards a phenomenon and situational stimuli.

The effects of mindfulness have been investigated using psychometric and induction methodologies. There have been different techniques to measure mindfulness which have been used to establish the effect of mindfulness on the quality of an individual's mental health and behavioral regulation. Laboratory-regulated experiments have also been done to examine the effect of mindfulness on cognitive performance. The different studies show a relationship between the enhancement of mindfulness and its effect on psychological and mental well-being, physical health and interpersonal relationships and behaviors.

Commentary article

The commentary article provides an account of an inductive approach to the scientific study of mindfulness. The article also examines the functional and contextual perspectives on the process and outcome of mindfulness. It is acknowledged that mindfulness has been a part of our spiritual individuality, but little has been done to study the subject in scientific traditions. To understand and examine the methodologies used in the study of mindfulness, it is important to adopt a scientific approach to study the methods and techniques used to link them with clear and well-elaborated concepts. An empirical approach validates a methodology but does not necessarily imply that the methods are helpful or not (Hayes & Wilson, 2003). Adopting a scientific approach helps in relating the effect of private experiences on changing the process of mindfulness.

There are different issues and arguments raised in the commentary article. The authors present different key issues for example that changes in cognitive functions influence mindfulness. The article postulates that human cognition is fundamentally influenced by learning. Advanced research in inductive theories has been found to provide a meaningful and important relationship between human behavior and cognition. The inductive theories have been used in a scientific approach to making predictions about psychological events in a precise and in-depth manner. The scientific approach involves the use of variables that can be controlled and which significantly influence cognition and human behavior (Biglan & Hayes, 1996).

The first argument is that mindfulness is a process which involves the change in cognitive functions. The commentary article points out that the state of mind is judgemental and is focused on both the future and the present. This argument is contrary to what the target article had posited that one of the key characteristics of mindfulness is that it is non-discriminatory and present focused. The article argues that it is possible to comprehend mindfulness in a manner of scaling up behavioral principles and inductive theories in the analysis of human verbal and cognition functions. Adopting a bottom-up methodology is a pragmatic criterion that is useful in linking up the prediction and influence of cognitive functions and behavioral phenomena (Fletcher & Hayes, 2005).

The analysis done in the commentary article provides a way of understanding mindfulness starting from the bottom and simple concepts upwards to complex issues. The article argues that it is not possible to define mindfulness and note its key characteristics. The authors posit that the study of simple phenomena such as an individuals' behavioral aspects is the building block of understanding mindfulness. The changes in human language and the altering of cognitive functions should be the foundation upon which the study of mindfulness is done. Research programs and inductive theories done using a scientific approach lead to the empirical conclusion which brings out the connection between mindfulness as being influenced by cognition changes.

The other issues raised in the commentary article is that the changes in verbal language and cognition can be attributed to continuous learning that leads to derived relations. The ability to come up with mutual relations among occurrences and events and combine them into meaningful relations is the basic underlying the development of consciousness. The exists a relational nature between different human functions and behaviors are thus developed through the mutual relations which are derived after certain life experiences. The article opines that human language and other cognitive functions are learned in a relational manner, and if there exists no relational learning, then there is little or no development in human language abilities (Berens & Hayes, 2007).

Summary and further suggestions

The arguments raised in the commentary article points out that the research of mindfulness is still in nascent stages and thus require further development. More research and scientific studies need to be done to increase convergence of the results of different methodologies used to study mindfulness. The findings of these different study methodologies point to the conclusion that mindfulness influenced adaptively and derived human functioning. There still are different methodological limitations which need to be addressed if the literature work on mindfulness is to be developed.

Further theoretical and scientific inquiry should be made on several issues to resolve the lingering differences and uncertainties to build the literature work on mindfulness. One of the issues is the measurement of mindfulness which needs to be done using reliable measuring constructs. The other key subject that requires further inquiry is the process of consciousness development. More inquiry into the developmental process of mindfulness will provide some clarity on the individual behavioral differences.


Hayes, S.C., & Wilson, K.G. (2003). Mindfulness: method and process. Clinical Psychology: Science and Practice, 10, 161-165.

Biglan, A., & Hayes, S.C. (1996). Should the behavioral sciences become More pragmatic? The case for functional contextualism in research on human behavior. Applied and Preventive Psychology: Current Scientific Perspectives, 5, 47-57.

Fletcher, L., & Hayes, S.C. (2005). Relational frame theory, acceptance and commitment therapy, and a functional analytic definition of mindfulness. Journal of Rational-Emotive & Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, 23, 315-336.

Berens, N.M., Hayes, S.C. (2007). Arbitrarily applicable comparative relations: Experimental evidence for a relational operant. Journal of Applied Behaviour Analysis, 40, 45-71.

Brown, K.W. (2006). Mindfulness and attentional control. Unpublished data, The University of Rochester.

Brown, K.W., & Ryan, R.M., (2003). The benefits of being present: Mindfulness and its role in psychological well-being. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 84, 822-848.

Cite this page

Understanding Mindfulness Essay Example. (2022, Oct 19). Retrieved from https://proessays.net/essays/understanding-mindfulness-essay-example

Free essays can be submitted by anyone,

so we do not vouch for their quality

Want a quality guarantee?
Order from one of our vetted writers instead

If you are the original author of this essay and no longer wish to have it published on the ProEssays website, please click below to request its removal:

didn't find image

Liked this essay sample but need an original one?

Hire a professional with VAST experience!

24/7 online support

NO plagiarism