Mindful Reminders

Weekly Mindful Reminder – Is it really a problem?

Hi Everyone,

Isn’t technology a wonderful thing?

Well, maybe it is if we don’t allow it to control us with feeling addicted to using it.
In contrast, it’s also amazing when it’s working properly!!!

My internet connection failed recently and two weeks later after numerous calls to BT and several engineers visiting, it’s still not resolved.
I realised just how much I depend on the internet and after all of this time, my mind eventually started to “kick off” big time.

– I noticed just how busy my mind became, going over and over how much I can’t do, mostly relating to work and how inconvenient this is.  Oh and of course thoughts like, “what will people think….?”
– I noticed the impact that engaging in and believing the thoughts had on me physically.  Tension in my jaw and head, tight tummy and breath became fast and shallow.
– I noticed how this impacted on my behaviour.  I was less tolerant generally and a bit clumsy, dropping things and losing random things too like items of clothing etc.
I also found it harder to make decisions, so taking longer to complete tasks, which fuelled the agitation. I couldn’t think straight.

…And so, here is a perfect example of how we can allow one of life’s little challenges to consume and trap us.
We easily turn this into a significant problem and lose perspective on life generally.

Thankfully because I practice mindfulness, this “problem” quickly turned back into just one of life’s challenges as I gained perspective by practicing the following:

PAUSING

Labelling the thoughts as “just thinking” – letting them go
Bringing my attention back into the present moment by noticing sensations in the body such as the feet on the floor and tension in the jaw. Also feeling the breath.
Taking a few deep breaths to calm the nervous system.
Listening to sounds
Asking myself “what do I need right now?”, so being kind to myself and all I needed was to soften the body, have a cup of tea and smile.

So, next time this happens to you – probably today at some stage or even right now, see if you can manage the situation mindfully and help yourself to gain some perspective.

Life then becomes so much easier and calmer.

Warmest wishes,
Roz
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Weekly Mindful Reminder – This too will pass

How are you feeling right now? – perhaps excited, calm, agitated, sad, annoyed, frantic, happy….

Mindfulness practice helps us, over time, to experience our ever changing pattern of emotions as physical sensations in the body.

Emotions are not there to be solved in the head, they are there to be experienced.

When we engage in and believe thoughts about the emotion (especially the unpleasant ones) like “I don’t like this”, “they made me cross…”, “I want to feel happy not sad” etc etc, we are simply providing fuel for that emotion to continue and we’re fighting against our reality – this is a fight that we can NEVER win.

We fuel unpleasant emotions by engaging in thoughts about them and resisting the actual experience.

So, can you drop your awareness into the body and just feel the physical sensations of our ever changing emotions.
Come out of the head and into the body with kindness and curiosity.

Be grateful that you can allow yourself to really feel any pleasant emotions passing through the body and when the emotions are unpleasant, we can feel them too because this also allows then to simply pass by.

Warmest wishes,
Roz

Blog One

Weekly Mindful Reminder – Set yourself free

Hi Everyone,

I was lucky enough to go and see Linkin Park, a pop/rock/rap band the other night.

I’d like to share with you  some of the lyrics from one of their songs, called Heavy.

“….I don’t like my mind right now
stacking up problems that are so unnecessary.
Wish that I could slow things down
I wanna let go but there’s comfort in the panic
and I drive myself crazy thinking everything’s about me.

I’m holding on.
Why is everything so heavy?
I’m holding on
to so much much more than I can carry.

I keep dragging around what’s bringing me down.
If I just let go, I’d be set free…..”

————————————————————–

So, how do we set ourselves free?
Notice the thoughts of the past or the future and let them go by giving yourself permission each day, even if it’s only for a few moments,
to wake up to the present moment of what’s actually happening right now.

Really listen to sounds…
Really taste food…
Drop your awareness into the body and feel the different sensations and the body breathing….
Really feel the body moving as you walk, run or simply open a door….

If we can let go of the thoughts that often drag us down, even if it’s just for a moment – we can in that moment be set free.

May Chester rest in peace. A very sad loss and talented musician.

Warmest wishes,
Roz

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Weekly Mindful Reminder – Agitated Mind

Hi Everyone,

Life is so full of beautiful and amazing experiences and isn’t it also true therefore that life is full of challenges and difficult experiences.

It’s during these difficult times, that a calm mind can really help us to manage these challenges and keep us afloat so that we don’t drown in the emotional distress of whatever life brings to us.

Agitation and stress is only ever caused by attaching to and believing thoughts that arrive in the mind – taking our attention to sensations in the body is where we can go to help calm the mind and it is then that we can see the answers and we know intuitively what we need to do.

A calm mind is a happy mind.
See if you can spend time each day noticing those many and varied pleasant events and experiences.
Practicing mindfulness each day if possible in whatever way you can will help to settle the mind, bringing greater clarity and contentment to our lives.

You could just pause and notice the body breathing, the sensations in the body, movement, notice sounds or taste.
Please also use the Present Mind Mindfulness App, if you’d like, to support you with a formal practice.

Warmest wishes,
Roz

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Weekly Mindful Reminder – Kindness

One of my favourite mindfulness teachers, Charlotte Joko Beck was asked what she had learnt from her 40 years of practicing mindfulness. She simply said “kindness”.

The Dalai Lama was asked to sum up his religion and he simply said “kindness”.

Mindfulness is a wonderful thing but if we can sprinkle even a small amount of kindness onto it, we can start to feel truly free, happy and content.

So, next time you notice that you’re being self critical, see if you can just pause for a moment, perhaps smile gently to yourself and quietly label the thoughts.  Allow your attention to settle into the body and just breathe and maybe say to yourself, “it’s ok”.
Can you have an attitude of kindness towards yourself, just like you would if you were comforting a best friend, child or kitten that was suffering?
E.G Kind words, comforting gestures, hugs, kind actions etc

Remember too that what we practice, we get good at!

Warmest wishes,

Roz x

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