Good afternoon. My name is Dr. Sayyed Mohsen Fatemi.
The topic of my talk today will focus on "Mindfulness",
and I'll explain to you how mindfulness is going to work
for a number of interpersonal and intrapersonal issues and problems.
I present mindfulness as not only a school of thought,
but also something that you can have for psychotherapeutic interventions and goals.
I did my post-doctorate at Harvard and I have taught at Harvard for almost 10 years.
I've also taught at the University of British Columbia,
University of Toronto, Western Washington University,
Boston Graduate School of Psychoanalysis,
UMS in Boston, and a number of other institutions.
Right now, I am the associate professor for
Ferdowsi University of Mashhad and I'm the chair
of the Desk of North America down there too.
I have published with Routledge, Wiley,
Springer, Oxford University Press, Cambridge University Press.
I have also published with Lexington,
at Palgrave Macmillan, and I have a new chapter
coming up with American Psychiatric Association.
I have taught a large number of courses in areas
of psychology including clinical counseling,
social psychology, cultural psychology,
and psychology of mass media.
I've done psychotherapy for almost 10 years.
So let me clarify what I mean by mindfulness.
When we talk about mindfulness,
I just need to explicate that there are two different types of mindfulness,
at least two different types of mindfulness in North America.
One is called meditation-based mindfulness,
which is associated with the name of Jon Kabat-Zinn and it
basically propounds that you can be mindful through meditation.
So for about 10 minutes a day,
focus on, breathe in and breathe out.
This attention, after a while,
is going to help you out with a lot of problems and
challenges and it helps you do emotional regulation.
It also facilitates the process of achieving
composure and tranquility in the midst of problems.
In addition to meditation-based mindfulness,
we also have what is called a Langerian mindfulness.
I have used this term in a number of my publications.
This term was coined by me.
Langerian mindfulness, which goes back to Ellen Langer,
a longstanding research findings for the past 40 years.
The main difference between Langerian mindfulness and
the meditation-based mindfulness is the fact that you can be mindful without meditation.
Here's what we do and what we have done at Harvard.
We believe and we propound and propose. Our experiments,
and studies have corroborated and substantiated that you can be mindful,
but not necessarily through meditation.
I am going to talk about this and see how this mindfulness
is going to have an impact on everything that you do.
An active state of mind is actually the essence of mindfulness.
Our mind can have different states and our minds can also
be characterized through different propensities, predilections, and inclinations.
We can be in an automatic state of mind.
When we are in an automatic state of mind,
we just act automatically.
There is no contemplation,
there is no cogitation,
there is no reflexivity,
there is no reflection.
We just act automatically.
It may have happened to you that you just leave your office,
being you make a beeline for your home or you go from your home to your office
and you don't know what's going on until you've got a bumper to bumper traffic.
Then you've got a type of event that somehow gives you an understanding of well,
what's going on around me?
Or you may have done something out of your habits.
You could have orange juice every morning for your
breakfast and because you've had orange juice for the past 25 years of your life,
you just wake up tomorrow and you do
the same thing and you don't realize this is a choice.
This is going to be an act of choice
because you are acting from a mindless state of mind.
Now, mindlessness is the opposite of mindfulness.
When we are mindless,
we act just automatically.
We act based on a routinalized behaviors.
Habits are like a soft bed,
it's so easy to get into them,
but it's hard to get out of them.