“There is something wonderfully bold and liberating about saying yes to our entire imperfect and messy life.”
― Tara Brach
Joy lies in the fight, in the attempt, in the suffering involved, not in the victory itself
- Mahatma Gandhi
We all have one thing that makes us suffer – a person we dislike at work, a health problem, financial issues . . . It seems very hard to let go of that one issue. We fritter away other opportunities to live life fully. The technical word for this behavior is “ruminate”. Negative ruminative thinking refers to our repeated thoughts about threatening or unpleasant such as upcoming exams and stressful events in the past or our future.
The research is extremely consistent. People who ruminate are much more likely to develop problems with depression and anxiety, and those problems are hard to overcome for someone who fails to change ruminative thought patterns
Over the past few months, I have chosen to spend my Saturdays away from Facebook and my laptop (Gasp!). I realize more that, our human brain was designed for handling conflict, solve problems and collaborate with others – often giving us a choice over the fight or flee part of the brain. I spend time pondering on a handful of powerful questions as I do my daily routines of laundry, weekly errands and action plan for the coming week – I call it - “Reflection with focus and awareness”
I take time to reflect on my worries, anxieties and failures and accept them. As a result, I am more easily able to tap feelings love, joy and peace by letting go sadness, frustration or anxiety.
Are you curious about the questions I ask myself? Set a 5- or 15-minute timer and start writing. Don’t edit it or redraft it – just let your thoughts and feelings flow. An alternate plan is to share your thoughts and feelings with a trusted friend who is a good listener. Some of my friends do share their reflections with their pet dog! <3
1. What do you most want to change about your life?
2. How have you tried to change this before?
3. What have you attempted in the past that didn't work?
4. Why do you think it didn't work?
5. On a scale of 0-10, how important is it for you to achieve change?
That’s it! Just writing answers to these questions often gives me insights. Later in the day, I follow this with another 10-15 minutes of action plans. I have a “solution-based” approach that minimizes anxiety and promotes acceptance and creativity. Want to know more about that approach? Send me your scribbles, thoughts and reflections and I will send you a summary of the tools I use.
a guided finger meditation
Engage your senses with soothing music, guided imagery and a labyrinth tracing activity which leverages the power of touch. Click the album cover to learn more.