Mindfulness: Autopilot, Brooding, Thinking, Thinking

I completed reading the Mindfulness book by Mark Williams and Dr. Danny Penman. I had posted on Instagram that I was reading this book and so many of you were asking about it so I figured worth a quick blog post. Mindfulness seems to be a buzzword right now, but there’s so much value in finding mindfulness from your mental health to your physical well being. Being mindful, and meditating seem to go hand in hand here which can be intimidating for non-meditators, or people like me who feel like they suck at it. My brain really feels like it doesn’t turn off. That being said, the book was very approachable and would provide examples of what you might be feeling as you bring mindfulness into your life. Within the first chapter I had some big takeaways. Now that I’ve completed the book, I thought I would share some of them.

The evidence is clear, brooding is the problem not the solution.

When you’re brooding or thinking about a problem you might be having, you’re focusing on the gap. In other words, highlighting that there is something wrong. By doing this, it continues to make the gap or problem bigger because it’s what you’re focusing on. Instead of questioning why you’re feeling negative, or sad or angry, trying to solve it, instead move past it. What you focus on expands, so it’s best to focus on the positivity and beauty around you. Try to catch yourself focusing on the problem so you can quickly breathe, accept that there is nothing to solve, and move on.

That’s my spot!

Have you ever felt a little annoyed that someone took YOUR spot? Don’t they know?! Or perhaps you automatically go the same way to work, sit in the same chair for dinner, and on the couch. You’re in autopilot, which is okay in many cases as it helps you to be efficient. Your brain doesn’t have to overthink. But, try challenging yourself to change spots, switch it up. This counts as being mindful. You’re thinking instead of automatically doing.

I have to go to this appointment, then coffee date, gym, remember to pick up raisins, then flip the laundry...

Speaking of thinking. The next thing that stood out to me was trying to label the different voices within our brains. When you notice that you’re not being present or mindful, you’re usually stuck in your mind. Once you catch yourself in your mind, try and label which voice was taking control. Was it thinking thinking, worrying thinking, planning thinking? Labelling the voices helps you to catch them and bring yourself back to reality or being mindful of what you’re doing right now. You’ll start to notice which voice seems to be louder or more common than the others.

In the book there is an eight week mindfulness program which I am starting this week. You can follow along with the meditations if you’d like here.

Have any mindfulness tips for me?! I’m your student, send me a message.

-Yours in the Hustle-