By: JoJo Ossmen
This is something newly added to my “coping mechanism”. I turn to these when I get anxious and need something to snap me back into reality. Since sleeping, in general, has been an on going battle since I was a child, I have found that using “mindful meditation” keeps me calm enough to eventually fall asleep. I also use this before I go into work if I know it might be an especially long day (hello Monday!). One day, I will get over my stubborn self and use it when I am going into a full blown panic; this is not yet mastered. However, mindful meditation is a great tool to use just from day to day, anxiety or no anxiety!
How to do it! ( in other words, how I was taught…. I realize there are varying versions of this exercise, and that is OK.)
- Close your eyes
- Focus on everything you can HEAR, new sounds that you did not notice before etc.
- Switch your focus to everything you can FEEL. Your hand on a soft pillow, the chair pressed against your back, your toes wiggling in your shoes, the air on your face etc.
- Take deep breathes, feel your chest rise and fall, nice and slow, steady breathes.
- Pick a color that is calming, picture that color filling up your body as you breathe. I like to also picture it almost illuminating off my body; but that is just me.
Like I said, this is a great tool. Regardless of what you use it for, it is a great way to bring you back to reality, and calm your spirit.
Give it a try!
** Mindful Meditation source: Michael M. Haderlie, PhD Giles, Haderlie & Associates Family Psychology