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Chronic Illness Q&A with Dr. B.

Dr. Larry Berkelhammer

Dr. Larry Berkelhammer

The purpose of this blog and the entire website is to provide evidence-based information on how to live a rich, rewarding life despite living with chronic health challenges. It is also for anyone wanting to know how to optimize subjective wellbeing by learning how to fully engage in a life of practice that is based on living by your own personal life values.

I post to this blog three times per week. Monday posts are evidence-based published articles that relate to mindfulness-based practices. Wednesday posts are videos of webinars or interviews. Friday posts consist of questions about how to increase wellbeing, and my answers to them.

Here is this week’s question:
THIS WEEK’S QUESTION: What is attentional training?

ANSWER: In simple terms, attentional training is mind training that results in greater awareness of thoughts, feelings, and behavior.  Formal mindfulness meditation is the single most important practice. This training is easy to find. Just sign up for an MBSR class, which is an eight-week series that is available in every large metropolitan area and small university town. Other mindfulness classes are available in Buddhist meditation centers found all over North America and Europe and you do not need to adopt any Buddhist precepts to learn mindfulness meditation at those centers.

Mindfulness practice allows for the ability to identify our self-limiting beliefs and provides the ability to recognize unhealthy ways of thinking as nothing more than insubstantial mental constructs—just products of brain function.

Increased awareness and attention to the present moment helps us better appreciate all the things that are going well in our lives. One of the things we begin to appreciate is the power of conscious choice—the ability to choose how we want to live.

Attentional training or mindfulness is much more than formal sitting meditation. Practices such as slow, diaphragmatic breathing and good posture are exceptional forms of attentional training that can be practiced while walking down the street or engaged in conversation.

This website is offered as a free public service, supplying information that has been found helpful to certain people living with chronic health challenges. No treatment is offered on this website. The advice is general, and may or may not apply to your individual situation, and is not a substitute for psychotherapy or medical treatment.
What questions do you have about how to live better with chronic health challenges that are related to the relationship between states of mind and health?
Just scroll down and type your question in the comment box below. I will post a reply to your comment, but your specific question may not appear in this column. The reason for that is I wait until I get a certain number of related questions, then I pick one that covers them all and I answer that one.

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