If you’re like me, you’ve tried countless mantras, affirmations and “positive thinking” to work your way through difficult times. These are all well and good when handling relatively small challenges. But have you noticed when something REALLY rocks your boat your mind unleashes all it’s old habits and tricks which in turn make you feel awful!?
That’s because the mind is conditioned! (And I think we forget that sometimes)
Working with our thoughts is effective, but what I love even MORE is detaching from all my mind chatter to feel and sense my aliveness and my body–this almost always inspires wisdom for me!
What I’ve noticed is that my clients’ first few responses to life’s curve balls are almost always some kind of conditioning. It takes time to sift through the layers of conditioning before we can access some skillful thoughts. (Which is why Mindbody Life Coaching can be sooooo freakin’ powerful!) I’ve coached for nearly 14 years and I’ve used all the mind tricks in the book, but what’s most powerful for my clients is having them see their thoughts as JUST THOUGHTS and something they should observe from a distance if they want to feel grounded. It’s very easy to follow the story our mind’s tell us and before we can blink we are uprooted from our truth and feeling anxious!
Follow this very simple and well-practiced mindbody tool so you can start developing the skill of being the witness to your thinking, rather than get dragged around by your mind’s activity.
Schedule at least 5 minutes to do this in a quiet place where interruptions are unlikely to happen:
For the first minute, just allow yourself to show up. Notice your body, notice the weightedness of your body. Feel what its like to sense your body right here, right now. Don’t over think this 🙂 Just be with your body in whatever capacity you notice it, without there being a “right way” to go about it. Just simply noticing your body as a whole.
Now for the next two minutes, when you notice your mind thinking, simply label that activity as “thinking” and gently return your attention back to your body (feel it as a whole, notice its weightedness). And do this dance, between mind activity, labeling it as “thinking” and gently redirecting your attention to your body again. Do this over and over as if there is no right way to do it (cuz there isn’t!) and be allowing of yourself to feel like a newbie (because we always are). Once you’ve spent 2-3 minutes in this dance and continually bringing your awareness back to your body, take a moment to thank your body for being here and supporting you. I like to place my hands on my chest and acknowledge with gratitude. In the last minute of this exercise feel 3 whole breathes before batting your eyes open.
What you’ve just done here is built the skill and muscle behind noticing your thoughts as JUST thoughts, nothing more. They are stories you don’t have to buy into every moment of every day. Taking this time out also allows your entire nervous system to shift down and disarm slightly.
Repeat this exercise at least daily, like your daily multivitamin!