When we talk about mindfulness therapy or mindfulness training we usually refer to either Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), or Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT). Both are related and follow a similar program and use the same techniques. However, MBCT has a specific focus on treating people with recurring depressions whereas MBSR is a structured program that uses mindfulness to reduce stress related problems. MBSR is also used to alleviate pain and to improve physical and emotional well being. The MBSR stress reduction program was established by Jon Kabat-Zinn at the University of Massachusetts Medical school.
The basis of both MBSR and MBCT is mindfulness, which Jon Kabat-Zinn defines as, “a moment-to-moment, non-judgmental awareness. Through meditation, individuals increase their self-awareness, which leads to a greater unity between the mind and body. Research into meditation and its health benefits has been widely accepted and the concept of mindfulness-based stress reduction was created out of the desire to understand these benefits more closely.