If you aren’t practicing mindfulness…..you are practicing reactivity – Jon Kabat-Zinn
Do you ever have those moments of driving somewhere and when you arrive at your destination you can’t remember how you got there? It can be an unsettling sensation! The tendency for our minds to get lost in memories, regrets, daydreams and worries can keep us from being able to stay focused on the here and now. This backward and forward focus is often associated with anxiety and depression.
Our minds can be like unruly puppies and just like a puppy our minds require steady, patient training to learn new ways of behaving.
So what to do?
One approach for training our minds to be more present-focused is mindfulness. According to Jon Kabat-Zinn, mindfulness is “paying attention on purpose, in the present moment, and nonjudgmentally, to the unfolding of experience moment to moment.
Here are a two mindfulness approaches you can try:
- Guided relaxation: having a regular guided relaxation practice can help to train the mind to keep focused on the script. There are lots of great guided relaxations on the web. You can also download a 15 minute guided relaxation mp3 that I created.
- Diaphragmatic Breathing: focusing on the inhale and exhale is another way to keep our attention in the here and now. Breath2Relax is a free app that can help with this practice.