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Mindfulness meditation: a path of transformation & healing.

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  • Pain and Palliative Care Program, and Pediatric Oncology, Dana Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, MA 02115, USA. maryjane_ott@dfci.harvard.edu


As nurses, we have the unique privilege of witnessing and nurturing the healing process of the whole person--mind, body, and spirit. Teaching mindfulness meditation is a nursing intervention that can foster healing. The consistent practice of mindfulness meditation has been shown to decrease the subjective experience of pain and stress in a variety of research settings. Formal and informal daily practice fosters development of a profound inner calmness and nonreactivity of the mind, allowing individuals to face, and even embrace, all aspects of daily life, regardless of circumstances. By emphasizing being, not doing, mindfulness meditation provides a way through suffering for patients, families, and staff. This practice allows individuals to become compassionate witnesses to their own experiences, to avoid making premature decisions, and to be open to new possibilities, transformation, and healing.

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