A women when she was 22 years old experienced a panic attack followed by depression after following  a Mindfulness course.

To all those who are considering mindfulness meditation, I would like to tell you that I wish everyday of my life that I had not agreed to practise it. My experience with mindful meditation is perhaps the opposite of what you have heard. It is one that precipitated and I believed caused my depression and anxiety. It provided the opposite of its touted benefits. I was 22, a newly graduated university student who had never experienced any anxiety or depression in any serious or clinical form.  I was however experiencing some insecurity about my future. Questions such as, what did I want to do with my life, where did I want to live, who would make reliable friends all seemed to be flooding into my mind. I decided to see a therapist to help address these worries and to help to evaluate who I was as a person in order to better direct my career path. He advised me to take the Toronto based Mindful Mediation for Stress Reduction course, which I did, thinking that it would reduce my stress about the future. I practised one hour each day for probably 4 months. Through meditation I became very aware of my thoughts. While that may be a great benefit to many people, personally I found it to be torturous. There was no warning about this possible reaction. No one involved within the course provided any assistance to help explain or address my new found fear. Aware that I would be constantly subject to the awareness of my thoughts, which let’s be real were not always positive, threw me into my very first panic attack. After which, came depression. It is clear that many find being very aware of their thoughts beneficial, however I would STRONGLY urge anyone who may not be ready to address all of their mind at once, to reconsider practising mindfulness. This may not be the path for you.

She is now 25 years old and has not had a further panic attack but she does still experience some anxiety although this aspect has greatly improved.

If you have a personal story of experiencing adverse psychological effects associated with meditation practice do write in with your story.

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