The power of mindfulness practice
Current research on the ancient practice of mindfulness meditation demonstrates that the practice is very effective in both softening the effects of depression and anxiety, as well as preventing "relapse," the recurrence of disabling episodes that are the hallmark of these conditions.
My experience mirrors this: to sustain changes, having some practice in mindfulness is essential.
Mindfulness practice consists of being aware of whatever is happening in your current experience, without judgment. It might be joy, it might be a pain in your knee, it might be the physical heaviness of depression, or happiness of an anxiety free momentóbut in mindfulness it is all viewed objectively.
Mindfulness is the underpinning of lasting change
Depression and anxiety are states of being trapped in thoughts and feelings. The effectiveness of mindfulness practice comes from the way it trains you to extract yourself from the whirlpool of your own pains. It's a lifeline for those swirling around and around in depression and anxiety, allowing you to find some solid ground.
Research on the brain is demonstrating how malleable it actually is; the idea that the adult brain is fixed is now shown as a myth. Mindfulness trains the brain away from a habit of perpetually re-experiencing anxious and depressed states, and towards the habit of acceptance and allowance of experience, which evens out our moods and keeps us from cycling repeatedly from coping to collapse.
Through mindfulness practice, real, tangible, sustained change happens.