Mindfulness, CBT and Your Favorite Celebrity Add Up to Less Anxiety?
Recently I wrote a post about the surging popularity of mindfulness in the workplace and now I am mentioning it again as one more piece in your anxiety treatment toolbox. Mindfulness is simply the art of living in the moment.
Since when a person is anxious they are typically focusing on either something that happened in the past or worrying about something that may happen in the future if one can focus on the moment, anxiety significantly lessens.
CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy) is a more well known anxiety curbing method of retraining your brain to be less anxious.
Tamar Chansky, author of “Freeing Yourself from Anxiety” says… “What would your best friend — or your favorite celebrity — say? Conjure up that person’s voice as they guide you to calm. George Clooney: Listen, woman, that CEO has a bark much bigger than his bite. You’ve totally got this. You: You are so right.
Kate Lowenstein of Health.com talks a bit more in depth on mindfulness
“When we feel anxiety, our thoughts are rarely in the present,” says Jenny C. Yip, a cognitive behavioral therapist in Los Angeles. “We are either ruminating about past mistakes or worrying about future consequences.”
Zooming in on what you can see, hear, taste, smell, or feel shifts your mind to the present. The more you practice this, the better equipped you’ll be when anxiety strikes, and the quicker you’ll calm down. Try this four-step exercise:
1. With eyes closed, imagine yourself and your surroundings from above.
2. How does the floor, mat, or chair feel? How’s the temperature in the room?
3. What are the sounds? Maybe an electrical appliance is humming, or trees outside are rustling.
4. Now tune into all these things at once.
Hard, right? That’s the point — to fill your thoughts with the present. When your mind wanders (and it will), bring it back to your senses. It may just bring — as famously said on “Seinfeld” — serenity now.
With a little practice everyday and some focus on the present you can chip away at the anxiety mountain in your life and find yourself living the life of peace we all dream of.
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