Who here suffers from anxiety? *raises hand* I’ve dealt with anxiety for almost as long as I can remember. In middle school it manifested itself in constant tummy aches and missing lots of school, in high school I learned what an anxiety attack was and to hide out in the girl’s bathroom until they passed.
There are tons of ways to cope with anxiety and there has been one tiny thing that has been a big help.
Living in the moment.
Easy to say, yet hard to do, I know. It’s one of those things that takes a lot of practice, especially if you have monkey mind, which is where your mind just won’t shush and keeps jumping from topic to topic. First thing’s first, concentrate on what’s going on right now, in this very moment.
I mean, right now you’re hanging out with me, maybe with a cup of tea or coffee, hopefully you’re all comfy, with a great day ahead of you, or a good night’s sleep in the near future. That doesn’t sound too shabby, right? Focus on what’s happening right now, focus on what you are feeling in this moment without the baggage of what has happened or what might happen.
This moment is pretty nice right?
When you stop worrying about what might happen, or you stop playing the past in your mind, you’re making space for the good things, for the real things, to flood into your life. What has happened can’t be changed, and what is going to happen hasn’t happened yet.
Concentrate on breathing. There’s breathing and then there’s breathing. That’s when you feel it deep in your stomach. After several deep breaths you start feeling it all through your body, suddenly your muscles are relaxing and all the yucky stuff starts fading.
Also focus on your body. One of the things that I do when I get anxious (trade secret here!) is I start massaging my hand. It helps me to focus on the right now, the feeling of my skin, of the feeling of easing tension out of my body. Good stuff!
Get thy feet to the Earth
, or learn how to ground
. Grounding, also known as earthing, is the act of connecting yourself back to the earth. There are many ways to ground. Sometimes it’s as easy as going outside and letting your bare feet walk upon Mama Earth. The easiest way to do this is to go outside (doing it inside will work too). Imagine you have roots coming out of your feet (if you are standing) or the base of your spine (if you are sitting). Picture your roots reaching deep down into the earth. Let them anchor you to the Source of all life. Empty your body of everything that isn’t serving you.
Practicing mindfulness is one of the keys to a happy, zen, life. Enjoy it!
How do you remind yourself to stay in the moment?