Students escape their busy lives through a meditation session held by the Counseling and Psychological Services every Wednesday and Thursday.
In the small room on the second floor of the Student Health Center, the dim lights emit a warm aura that generates an inviting atmosphere. Just the interior itself creates a serene and calm environment.
Students in attendance sit in a circle and introduce themselves. There is an array of undergraduates and graduates, who all come for one purpose: to relax their minds.
The hour-long session starts off with a bit of breathing meditation. Students sit with their eyes closed and Councilor Gerald Shephard, who has a Ph.D. in psychology and social work, encourages students to slow down and focus on the motion of their breathing.
Shephard said that this method will help his audience slow down and start to think differently.
Through this meditation, students learn to notice what is going on in their minds.
“I know students are anxious and they need to stop living in auto-pilot,” Shepard said. “They are missing what is happening moment by moment.”
Shephard points out that students should not be obsessed with the future and what will happen.
Having that stress sitting on their shoulders is unhealthy and students need a way to release that stress and tension.
Meditation of the mind and body helps to relax that tension and focus on the body. By directing attention to the motion of breathing in and out, one can begin to notice and be aware of their thoughts.
The Mindfulness Meditation sessions are held Wednesdays from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. on the second floor of the Student Health Center and Thursdays from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. in room F040 of the HSC Office.
FEATURE IMAGE CREDIT: MOYAN BRENN/FLICKR