In these days of the spreading viral pandemic, feelings of stress, anxiousness, fear & even panic are common. Alas, what can we do to calm our minds and still the nervous body?
Mindfulness – being present in each moment, allowing self-reflection and insight, is something that, with practice, carries the capacity to transform turbulent times & situations into new possibilities for learning and compassion.
There are many ways to practice, but what I want to explore with you today are some of the tools of Energy Psychology specific for enhancing mindfulness.Here are some sample steps for transforming distress into inner peace:
- When you note internal distress, visualize placing a white light around the whole situation, and step back a bit.
- Then treat yourself with gentle rubbing of the mid-chest, the heart area, and affirm: “Even though this pandemic is happening, even though I feel anxious, I deeply and profoundly accept myself and trust that there is positive learning and joy in this.” Repeat with your own words on the underlined areas as often as needed so you don’t get stuck in negative perceptions.
- Next, allow yourself to move to gratitude. Notice every little thing that does indeed work well, including your fine and powerful mind. Write down 10 things for which you are thankful; then add 10 more.
- Take time for reflection while doing daily tasks. Be mindful, aware, of getting dressed, doing the dishes, making lists, housecleaning, preparing food, eating, walking the dog.
- Gently pat or tap all of your body starting at the head, neck, shoulders and arms, across your body, reaching to the back and down each leg to your feet, bringing increased vibrancy to all your cells.
- Imagine each cell of your body listening carefully to your thoughts and send deep thanks to all of your being and to your environment.
- Each evening before going to bed, write down at least 3 things you were grateful for that day. Can’t think of anything? How about being able to see, hear, taste, smell & touch? I’m grateful for having a bed, warm covers, a room with a roof that doesn’t leak. Have enough food to eat. . .water to drink. . .a place to sit. . .family. . .a pet (or 2 or 3) – all good things to appreciate.
- When you awaken the next morning, try repeating this short gatha from Thich Nhat Hanh. (I know, it’s not energy psychology, but it works well to help start the day on a positive note.) “Awakening this morning, I smile. 24 brand new hours are before me. I vow to live each moment mindfully, and view all beings I encounter with eyes of loving kindness.” When I do this, after the words ‘all beings’, I add ‘especially Copper’ my loving dog who is always there when I arise. That way, both of us wake up happy!