In the past, I really suffered with anxiety. Generally it is very well under control these days, mainly because of mindfulness.
Even now I notice the signs that it might arise but mindfulness has given me the tools to manage my state of mind much more effectively. It has given me a coping mechanism, more than this a thriving mechanism!
Naturally my most anxious time is first thing in the morning. This seems to be quiet common amongst anxiety sufferers.
On my most anxious days I used to find myself wide awake early in the morning and needing to get up and get on. This might sound productive but it was often to distract myself from anxious thoughts that seemed to plague me.
Today I have had a really busy schedule and I can recognise that in the past it would have been one of those days with an anxious start. It got me thinking about how far I have come on my mindfulness journey.
I had an early morning appointment somewhere I didn’t know. In the old days that would be a classic trigger for me. My head would be spinning with directions, planning and clock watching. I had to be back in time to start work and in the past worry over being late would have taken over. Later on I have a yoga class and then a meeting afterwards. None of these things alone would have caused me to be anxious, but all of them on one day would certainly have had me in a mental tiz!
At the end of the day I would have been exhausted if I had worried my way through.
When we worry we are tense and this uses lots of energy and if it goes on for an extended period it can really drain us.
So what has changed?
Well, when I got up this morning, rather than busying myself, I sat quietly for 10 minutes and focussed on my breath. Breathing in an upright position means that we have so much more energy because the oxygen can circulate more effectively in our bodies.
Having a bit more self awareness meant I set off nice and early for my appointment so that there was no need to clock watch, I even resisted using my Sat Nav and just looked on a map before I set off. I knew I had it with me if I needed it but in my calm state of mind even my navigation skills were improved.
When I arrived at my appointment I didn’t leap straight out of my car, I took a few deep breaths and brought myself back to the moment which put me in just the right calm state to begin my day.
Life can be really hectic. It is so easy for our minds to follow suit and to race at a million miles an hour. This can leave us mentally and physically drained.
Mindfulness really can give you the skills you need to make your day run more smoothly and to help you to enjoy everything you do rather than seeing it as a relief once it’s over.
Book a private session or book onto a day retreat to see what mindfulness could do for you and your state of mind. Sometimes really simple changes can make the most enormous difference to the way you feel.