In this post we’re going to look at some things you can do to get some separation from your thoughts when your emotions are particularly strong and you’re having some thoughts you’re finding hard to let go. Read the rest of this entry »
In a recent post we looked at how mindfulness can help us let go of our thoughts when we get caught up in ruminating or worrying or just thinking in circles. Letting go of thoughts is never easy, however, and in this post we’ll look at how simply watching our thoughts can help us let them go.
Thoughts pop into our heads all the time, and usually we don’t pay any special attention to them: they enter and leave our minds all on their own, just like a car that drives into our line of sight, remains in our field of vision for a few moments, and then drives along and passes out of our line of sight again. Read the rest of this entry »
What often happens is we let our stress or anxiety build and build all day without doing anything about it, trying to ignore it, and just hoping it will go away. Then, when we finally can’t take it anymore and start feeling overwhelmed, we’re desperate to find a way to manage all of this stress and anxiety and get some relief, but at that point, it can be so hard to get any relief.
The more we allow stress and anxiety to accumulate, the more difficult they become to address. That’s why one of the keys to managing stress and anxiety is to find ways to not let them build up so much in the first place. Read the rest of this entry »
It’s easy to get swept away by our thoughts, especially in the face of strong emotions. We get stuck ruminating and dwelling about the past, filled with guilt or regret. Or our minds start racing and we can’t stop worrying about the future and imagining all the things that could go wrong. Or we replay conversations over and over again in our heads, trying to make sense of them or figure out what we could have said differently.
When our minds get going like this, not only is it exhausting; these patterns of thinking tend to make us feel bad, intensifying the emotions we’re already feeling and generating additional negative emotions as well. Because this experience is so unpleasant, it’s natural to want to these thoughts to stop, and to be able to prevent yourself from even having them in the first place. We often wind up trying to make these thoughts go away, and shut them out completely and make sure they don’t come back. But just like we can’t control our emotions or suppress our emotions, neither can we control or suppress our thoughts. Read the rest of this entry »
It would be great if we could go about our whole day completely mindful, bringing our full attention to whatever we’re doing, while we’re doing it, and not getting carried away by distractions or thoughts of the past or about the future. But although mindfulness sounds simple, it does require effort. It takes a continual effort to notice when our mind’s started to wander and keep bringing it back to the present, and it’s not something most of us can do all day long. Read the rest of this entry »
We often talk about two broad categories of mindfulness practice. Formal mindfulness involves setting aside some time specifically for practicing mindfulness as we do when we engage in mindfulness meditation. Informal mindfulness, on the other hand, refers to finding ways to incorporate mindfulness into our daily lives. Read the rest of this entry »
The first is called the Three Minute Breathing Space, and it was developed as part of the Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy program for people with depression. Like the Breathing Time Out, it’s a way to bring your attention to the present, give yourself a break from whatever stress or emotions have been building up, and then return to the rest of your day, more refreshed and focused on the present. Read the rest of this entry »
Just as a time out can be an effective way to help children calm down when they are acting out and starting to get out of control, when our thoughts and emotions start getting carried away, a time out is a great tool to help calm ourselves. Read the rest of this entry »
But as people recognize how difficult it can be to stay mindful in our digital world, applications are being developed to help prevent us from getting too caught up in all the technoogy that surrounds us, and offering ways to come back to the present and be more mindful. Read the rest of this entry »
In his book, The Worry Cure, Robert Leahy provides a flow chart that summarizes the various ways we can deal with our emotions and the results are tend to follow. The chart highlights undesired results that tend to arise when we try to avoid our emotions in various ways, or when we invalidate our emotions by telling ourselves that they are wrong.
For more information about how you could benefit from mindfulness-based therapy, visit my mindfulness therapy webpage. To make an appointment for counselling or therapy in Toronto, please call me at 416-516-6024 or email email@example.com.