Every day, people face innumerable stressors. Whether it is a speech for work, or a simple family dinner, we feel the pressure to appease and perform under many circumstances. However, these circumstances are too often compared to previous circumstances we have been in; we think about the last time we gave a speech, or the last time our family came together. Before the event even takes place, we have this preconceived vision of what it is going to be like.
These predictions and anticipations of the future loom over us like a dark cloud of stress and nervousness. We are prepared for an outcome that we have created in our minds. Ultimately, we have prepared for an outcome that may never occur.
Mental images of our pasts and futures are not tangible, we cannot hold them in our hands. Our minds naturally turn to previous experiences we have endured because it is easy. It is easy for all of us to find comfort in things we are used to and familiar with.
I challenge you today to question your anxiety surrounding something in your life. Is the thing causing anxiety something that you can hold in your hands? Likely, it is not, which means your mind is creating it. The question then becomes, "How can I stop creating my anxiety and get in control of my thoughts?"
Through mindfulness, you can focus on what is real in your environment. For example, if you are fixing your bed, pay close attention to the texture of the sheets and the smell of the fabric. Or, if you are washing the dishes, notice the temperature of the water and how the color of the soap changes with movement. By devoting your attention to the tangible things in front of you, your mind naturally quiets.
Today, choose to be mindful, choose to pay attention to things that are real, choose to live presently.
Emma Petersen is a psychotherapist specializing in depression, bereavement, and grief. Her passion is helping others during the most distressing and vulnerable moments in life.
Emma helps others see hope and potential instead of despair and closed doors, and has an uncanny way of shedding light on the most challenging situations.
She is most recognized for her ability to help others repair and amend broken and strained relationships in an effort to encourage personal growth and emotional peace. She primarily incorporates a combination of evidence-based and mindfulness techniques into session.
Via email: Emma@withinholisticcounseling.com
Via phone: 630-943-8904