Endless worrying can cause more harm than good, leading to serious anxiety if not checked. While it seemed impossible to stop worrying, there's an ancient practice that a Harvard Professor revealed that could help you overcome worry: mindfulness.
Ronald Siegel, an assistant clinical professor of Psychology at Harvard Medical School, said that mindfulness is the key to controlling worry. Mindfulness is better than immersing yourself in alcohol or going crazy with therapy. In fact, it's all the rage now according to Business Insider.
What Is Anxiety?
Refine The Mind said that mindfulness is a practice that gives you a sense of contentment and presence of mind. But to master the approach, you must first learn about worry. Worry or anxiety is an irrational form of fear according to Jordan Bates.
Anxiety often cripples your mind into thinking that something bad might happen, that you may not be good enough or that someone is thinking poorly of you. However, these thoughts are not validated. These are exaggerated fear brought on by the need to survive. It is then important to control these thoughts.
More On Mindfulness
In his book "The Mindfulness Solution: Everyday Practices for Everyday Problems," Siegel discussed mindfulness as the awareness of present experience with acceptance. Most often, you are trapped in your own little ideal world that you forget to be in the present. More so, you are so immersed with thoughts of how it "should" be that you forget to take in the world as it is.
Siegel then defines mindfulness as bringing "all sorts of insights into the workings of the mind." The real challenge is to accept that thoughts are not reality, he added. You're so used to believing in your story that to see things otherwise is a real challenge.
How To Practice Mindfulness
While there's no clear cut way on how to practice mindfulness, Help Guide gives basic steps on how to do it. Keep in mind that the basic principle is to observe and let go.
It all starts with acknowledging your anxious thoughts and feelings. Try to observe them from outsider's perspective without reaction or judgment. Then let your worries go. When you stop controlling how you feel, then feelings soon pass more smoothly.
Lastly, try to focus on the present by paying attention to your breathing, how your body feels or the thoughts that drift your mind. Be sure not to get stuck on a particular thought and always bring yourself back to the present.
For more tips on how to practice mindfulness, check out the video below. Also, don't forget to leave your thoughts about mindfulness in the comment box below.