Do you suffer from anxiety? If you do, you will understand just how debilitating this condition can be.
The worst aspect of anxiety is that it is often well hidden by the sufferer so the people around you are not aware of what is happening to you. What if someone told you that there is an exercise that you can learn to do in just a few minutes that would not only help you cope with your anxiety but also reduce it over time?
Mindfulness is an incredible skill, it is a practice that is taking the world by storm and helping more and more people live in their present.
Anxiety stems from your mind worrying about possible future events or reminiscing over past events. Anxiety makes us believe that dreadful things will happen. But what we don't realize is that while we are stuck worrying about a future that has not yet occurred or a past that we cannot change; the current moment is wasted. We miss out on the beauty and opportunities that are present all around us. What a sad thought.
Many people with anxiety feel that they have no control over their thoughts and this can make them feel frightened and powerless. When you are constantly bombarded by negative ruminations it is difficult to break out of the cycle of anxiety. Instead of allowing us to enjoy the present moment it forces us to live out painful pasts or imagined futures endlessly.
Psychology studies have shown that there are many benefits of mindfulness, especially for those suffering from anxiety. The secret lies in being able to gain control over your thoughts. Mindfulness has been shown to lower anxiety and stress as well as the fatigue that it causes. Over time, it has also been shown to improve memory (which is often negatively affected by anxiety) and improve reaction times.
Is mindfulness the same as meditation? Well, it is similar in some ways. Meditation also teaches you to focus your mind on the present by centering your thoughts on your breathing. However, they do differ because whereas meditation generally requires a quiet atmosphere, mindfulness can be practiced at any time and during any task. The aim of mindfulness is to focus on the senses to help the sufferer experience the moment, free from worry. That is what makes it such a powerful tool in combating anxiety because we all know that anxiety doesn't wait for a quiet moment to strike us.
Damaging and out of control thoughts can rob us of the ability to enjoy our present. Once you have practiced mindfulness you begin to find yourself automatically pushing aside these crushing thoughts and paying attention to your senses and the world around you. This is a skill that could truly change your life and help you break out of anxiety.