Somewhat ironically, I find preparing for a stress reduction course somewhat stressful (particularly the marketing piece). Yesterday for example, I experienced tension / worry in my forehead, tightness / annoyance in my eyebrows and a hollowness / vulnerability in the chest. Each of these emotion/sensation combinations were accompanied by a myriad of thoughts, e.g.: “Am I doing enough?” and “Why haven’t more people responded to my marketing email?”
Upon waking this morning with all of these experiences still hanging around, I paused and asked myself: “How can my mindfulness practice support me in the midst of this?” After all, mindfulness is all about intentionally bringing awareness to the present moment with a range of kind-hearted attitudes, so that we may know each moment fully. “Knowing each moment fully” means seeing clearly the interplay of thoughts, emotions, body sensations and impulses; how these four components are all connected and interdependent.
I was aware of these various components but what do I do about them?
Mindfulness gives us this beautiful duo of accepting each moment for how it is PLUS taking action based on the wisdom and insight that emerge from knowing what’s going on in that moment.
The pause gave me my answer: do some yoga, which is a mindfulness practice itself, mindful movement if you will. So I practised a few moves/postures and as I so often find, different yoga postures have quite specific impacts on me. The flexing of my back in Cobra somehow flexes my mind as well and helps me think more clearly, whilst Headstands give me a different perspective. New ideas often arise, even though I’m focusing on my body rather than my problems.
In fact, new ideas often arise BECAUSE I’m focusing on the body rather than my problems.
And generally, I feel a mix of calmer, stronger and more confident after I practise mindful movement.