"Mindfulness is the awareness that emerges when paying attention, on purpose, in the present moment and non-judgementally to things as they are"
What is Mindfulness?
Extended periods of meditation and mindfulness exercises we are able to step back and move to a place of awareness and get a sense of distance from our thoughts. We realise thoughts are not facts, they are just metal events that we can learn to respond to skilfully, allowing us a space to chose our response as opposed to running off old habits of the mind.
Mindfulness is the process of bringing our attention to thoughts, feelings and emotions occurring in the present moment through the practice of meditation.
As our Mindfulness practice develops, we discover that all sensations, thoughts and emotions, both pleasant and unpleasant, are temporary - they come and go.
Since the 1970's clinical psychology and psychiatry have developed a number of therapeutic applications based on mindfulness practice for helping individuals experiencing a variety of psychological conditions.
Alexander James CBH MBCT
In clinical studies, mindfulness-based applications have been shown to significantly reduce anxiety and panic (Kabat-Zinn et al.1992), depression, and anger, as well as confusion among cancer patients (Speca et al. 2000), and chronic pain (Kabat-Zinn et al.1986). Mindfulness has also been helpful in reducing symptoms of stress (Astin 1997), psoriasis (Kabat-Zinn et al. 1998) and binge eating (Kristeller 1999). Mindfulness is also used as part of a treatment plan for worry, phobias and interpersonal conflict.
I use both Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) and Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) as part of my approach to treat individual clients with a range of conditions including but not limited to:
Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR)
Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) is an anxiety treatment without medication. The 8-week evidence-based programme offers secular, intensive mindfulness training including techniques such as meditation, gentle yoga and mindfulness exercises to assist people with stress, anxiety and pain. After engaging in an MBSR course participants have reported feeling more energised and engaged in their work, less anxious, as well as sleeping better and displaying fewer physical symptoms of stress.
Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT)
Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) was designed specifically to help people who are prone to recurrent depression.
MBCT is an adaptation of MBSR (Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction) that uses the same basic format and structure combining mindfulness exercises like meditation, breathing techniques and stretching, with elements from cognitive therapy to help break the negative thought patterns that are characteristic of recurrent depression.
MBCT is recommended by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) as an effective treatment for people who suffer from recurrent episodes of depression. Evidence shows that MBCT can, on average, reduce the risk of relapse of recurrent depression by 43% (Mark et al, 2014).
Aside from its clinical application Mindfulness practice has been found to be beneficial in increasing sports performance and proven to enhance creativity, problem solving and decision making.
Please go to the MINIM (Mindfulness In Music) page for more information on my work with artists, songwriters, producers and executives in the music industry.
"I've just completed the 8 week mindfulness and Meditation course and I am absolutely grateful to Alex for the whole experience. The 8 weeks allowd me to build a solid foundation and awareness as to the benefits of meditation. They say that the key to learning anythinng is to have a great teacher and that is exactly what I found with Alex (he's exceptional). His weekly onboarding of new techniques meant that I wasn't overwhlemed, and was able to utilise the learnings over the next week before building on them in the next meeting. The teaching enabled me to feel the positive effects from day 1. One of the most powerful elements was having someone to meditate with live (in each class) which allowed me to ask questions without a fear of judgement right after. I can hand on heart say the 8 weeks has totally game changed me and the way I deal with anxiety, stress and most importantly how I live in the presence with my family. I wanted to invest time into meditation, and I know that I was able to truly embrace because of the stewardship and guidance of Alex."
Matt Miller - Google
"Alex developed NSPCC inMind to support NSPCC staff and volunteers with their well-being during the Covid-19 pandemic through developing tailor-made mindfulness tools and resources. On a personal level I've been interested in mindfulness for years, but I've never heard anyone explain it to me so simply and with such passion and insight, plus back it up with the tools to make it so accessible and easy to apply to every day life! Alex is so humble about his skill which makes him easy to connect with and a pleasure to work with and talk to - the ingredients for a truly life-changing therapist. I'd highly recommend Alex's introduction to mindfulness course for anyone looking to dip their toe in to mindfulness and it's benefits."
Lianne Smith - NSPCC Google
"Before the pandemic struck my life had felt chaotic and very stressful, trying to juggle many demands and responsibilities. Looking back I was extremely stressed out and when Covid-19 and lockdown happened things went from bad to truly awful. I felt out of control and like I was losing myself. I then met Alex (The Mindful Therapist) after seeing him on BBC news talking about mindfulness, and things changed for the better. Alex supported me to develop an understanding of mindfulness and how to implement this into my daily life to reduce my levels of stress and anxiety. I had heard of mindfulness before however I had no idea how life changing it could be. Alex was kind, warm and I easily felt able to open up to him. I was worried about how therapy ‘online’ would feel however I didn’t even notice! I am grateful to Alex for his guidance, support and introducing me to mindfulness."
Michael Davis - Google
Alexander James is a Mindfulness-Based Therapist and Cognitive Behavioural Hypnotherapist helping clients overcome addictions, stress and anxiety disorders.
Appointments are available at various clinics across Central London including:
1 Harley Street, Bank, Canary Wharf, Notting Hill, Wimbledon and outside London at the Cowdray Therapy Rooms in West Sussex.
I also offer home visits and Online consultations.
Disclaimer: Results are not guaranteed and may vary from person to person.