I hope this finds you well and your world is ticking along OK.
What is mindfulness?
Well, its honestly very simple, and all it requires is that you are mindful of your thoughts, actions, and choices.
So what does that even mean?
It’s training your mind to bring you back to the present moment at any given time.
If you practice being mindful, you’ll find it gets easier as you go along and find more ways to practice it. It may even lead you down a more spiritual path by simply making you feel more connected and often more enlightened. If you are not that way inclined the tools used in mindfulness can be very helpful in a very practical way too.
Mindfulness is a very useful way of life and tool to not only combat an obsessive type of fixation but also many other ailments both physically and mentally. It’s being used more and more today to balance both the body and the mind. This is something ancient Eastern civilizations have been doing for centuries and is part and parcel of everyday life in many countries across the world today.
So how do you use mindfulness to calm down your thoughts?
To help with overthinking, ruminating, and/or fixating?
Firstly a great mindfulness technique is meditation and it’s a great way to calm your mind. It’s a way of letting your thoughts naturally flow without judgment and accepting the things you simply cannot control. It calls us back to the present as such. Repetition is somehow comforting as is concentrating on your own breath.
Learning to accept “things” that happen in your life that you cannot control can be difficult but if you reframe your thoughts and practice doing this as much as possible then it is possible to make peace with yourself and your thoughts and calm down that “chatter” in your mind.
If you can’t get into meditation, because by golly it isn’t easy, from first hand experience, I won’t mind sharing that just quietly. Even closing your eyes and being present with what and who you are thankful for can help, and help a lot.
There is a great introductory exercise for beginners to practice mindfulness and it is called “the raisin exercise” – it can be done by anyone and with any type of food. Choose an interesting food, or one that you love and it has an unusual or bumpy kind of exterior texture, smell or taste is best.
- The way the raisin (or other food choice) looks
- How it feels
- How their skin responds to its manipulation
- Its smell
- Its taste
Focusing on a particular object brings our minds back to the “present”. We start to focus on what is right in front of us. When you focus on something tangible that’s right in front of you, you are more unlikely to expend any energy worrying, fixating or ruminating about other areas of your life.
There are a few more easy mindfulness exercises that don’t take a lot of time that may be worth exploring too.
If you are fixating on something for longer than you know you should, here is one as an example.
*Note: a list of other really helpful exercises will be in our new e-book we are putting together for more detailed entries, ideas and proven techniques for all our fixations.
- Firstly you could try the “Yawn and stretch” for 10 seconds every hour even if it’s a fake yawn! Lol! Doing this interrupt your thoughts and feelings and bring you back to the present. When you stretch, try to do it nice and slowly for at least 10 seconds. Notice the parts of your body that are stiff or tight and simply say “hello” to them. Take another few seconds to notice and be mindful about those parts without judgment and then go back to what you were physically doing or about to do.
For me personally, there is no better way to practice mindfulness than “The Body Scan”. I do this in the form of “reiki”. This involves scanning the body with your hands, almost in a ”hand levitation” type of action, without actual contact from hand to body/skin.
Whist a reiki session isn’t always available or “on-hand” (oopsy, excuse the pun!) for daily anxiety-related conditions, many of its principals can be used in daily life. Mindfulness, meditation, and mantras are but a few .
What is known in reiki is that parts of our body that find themselves inflamed when we are an over-thinker or fixating.
- A swelling or holding of fluids; relates to a stuck thought pattern, your mind is clogged and you have painful thoughts and ideas.
- Thrush; indicates anger over making the wrong decisions.
- Tinnitus or sensitive ears points to not being able to listen or hear your inner voice. It indicates stubbornness.
- Stomach problems point to not digesting something fully. The spleen is where obsessions are held.
- Bladder problems could mean you are stuck in old emotional places, attached to the past and unable to move or shift your thinking to the future
- IBS is connected with either maintaining control or boundaries or with trouble letting go and releasing control.
And there are many more 😉
That about wraps it up for me. I hope this helps show how mindfulness works and how beneficial it is to life, health, happiness, and wellbeing in general.
I also hope it gives you a few ideas on how to cope with any negative emotion that causes you or your loved ones any distress or discomfort including fixation.