Video Time: 3 Ways Mindfulness Exercises Help You Relax and Keep You in the Present

Hey everyone, I hope your enjoying the summer season. For this Video Time post, I thought we focus on the topic of Mindfulness. These videos will explain what mindfulness is and the techniques that make it up.

These videos will discuss how to lower your stress levels, slow down your thoughts, and focus on your 5 senses. One video will break down the process of how a thought can quickly consume us and result in a negative feeling. We can have negative thoughts in which we can acknowledge and leave it at that. Whether or not we act on them is up to us.

Any thought can come into our mind and change how we behave and what we say vert fast. Remember different parts of our body can be affected by this process as well.

Take care, stay safe, and remember your not alone and you have worth in this world.

Doing Things Out of Habit, Yet Your Not Fully Aware of What Your Doing

Your not alone if you’ve ever have done things strictly out of habit. You also may not have known that you were doing them either. I’m not talking about being intoxicated or being on drugs, I’m referring to things that you do out of instinct or are second nature to you, but your mind doesn’t always register what your doing.

Robot Mode

There are things in our life that we do automatically because we have done them so many times just recently or have been doing them for an extended period of time. These can range from folding clothes, doing long division, sculpting, painting, fixing a tractor, etc. If we have done something numerous times for an extended period of time, then we can do those things and be sometimes not be fully aware of our actions. This doesn’t happen all the time, but we can sometimes get more easily caught up in our thoughts.

For example, you have vacuumed your living numerous times that you have your own technique and way of doing it. The next time you vacuum, you are still aware of your surroundings and what you need to sweep, but more of your energy is going more toward your how you think. You may be thinking about work the next day, how your going to study for your quiz tomorrow, do you have feelings for a friend of yours, if your brother is feeling better after getting the flu, etc. You can be doing a lot of thinking to where your lost in your thoughts, yet your still doing a good job vacuuming your living room. You may have been so caught in your thoughts that you didn’t realize that you finished vacuuming the living room. Vacuuming the living room has become second nature to you.

This is what I mean by going into robot mode. Your aware that your doing something, but you were putting more of your energy and focus toward your thoughts. You were more present in your mind than you were to what is going on around you and what you were doing.

Back to the Present

Long term habits can become second nature and instinctual to you as I mentioned. Sometimes it takes a loud sound, someone talking to you, or touching you to bring you back to reality. There may be a sudden scare or a bit of confusion by coming back to the present.

I believe we don’t always intentionally get lost in our thoughts when we do things we’ve done dozens of times. If we have something big on our mind that were trying to figure out, we can get caught up in trying to solve it.

Here’s some tips on how to better manage this concept and how to come back to the present:

  • Distract your mind by talking to someone
  • Try something different that you’ve never done before (doesn’t have to be big)
  • Change up your behavioral patterns by doing something you normally do last first
  • Do things that are second nature to you first if you have a list of things to get done. They can get done faster
  • Close your eyes and pay closer attention to the sounds around you and describe them in as much detail as you can

Wrap Up

I hope this concept wasn’t too confusing to understand. We can go into robot mode when we do something for too long even in a short amount of time. If we do anything over and over again for an extended period of time, we can get more caught up in our thoughts to where we’re doing more deep and cognitive thinking than normal. You can say getting caught up in our thoughts is another way of entertaining ourselves if were doing something not exciting to us, but we have done it many many times.

As I mentioned in the vacuuming your living room example, time can get away from you. Sometimes that’s a good thing and sometimes it’s not. The deep thinking were doing can be about the past or the future. It’s hard to stay on the present because we do think ahead to the future or look back into our past.

We tend to not do any deep thinking when were learning something new because were putting our energy and focus into learning that thing. Were not giving ourselves the opportunity to get caught up in our thoughts. This can include listening to someone, mimicking what someone else is doing, or seeing how something is done. Learning new things can become habits down the road and they can become second nature and instinctual to you where you can go into robot mode.

Take care, stay safe, and remember your not alone and you have worth in this world.

Unknown Future, Regrets in the Past, Live in the Present

Our future is something that has been on our mind at some point.  We think about the next day, week, month, and year.  We try to plan things far out in advance and sometimes life says otherwise.  Sometimes not knowing the future can be scary.

There are people who map put there future.  They map out when they will graduate college and grad school.  They map out their career path, what age they want to get married, if their going to move somewhere new, how many kids they want to have, the age and year they want to retire, when they want to buy a house, etc.  There are people who try to map these things out, but you if noticed map out how old they want to be when they achieve one of those goals and what year it should happen.

It’s all right to have goals and plans like finishing college, having a career, wanting to get married and have kids, and living on your own.  Trying to map out every precise and specific detail can become stressful and no fun.  I have mentioned the unknown factor before and that can happen at any point in your life.  It can help and ruin well thought out plans.

When our plans get ruined or we don’t have a plan, that’s when the future can be scary.  We don’t have anything to work toward or have something to look forward to we can become lost, confused, stressed, and fearful about the future.

Past Regrets

We have a tendency to look back at our past sometimes seeking answers to our questions or when we do some soul searching.  Sometimes however we get caught up in our past mistakes and regrets.  Sometimes this just happens or we do it to ourselves intentionally. 

We sometimes dwell on those things thinking what different about outcomes could have happened or what we could have done different. 

In the back of our mind, we believe that we can undo every one of them especially the big ones.  In some cases we can, and in some cases we can’t.

Savor the Present

‘Live like there’s no tomorrow’ is another saying that we have heard at some point in our lives.  Living and savoring the moment can be difficult for some people to do.  Some people believe that they have to be doing something every moment of everyday. 

Instead of looking ahead, take a moment to look around your current surroundings.  Are you outside?  Look up at the sky and take that in.  Are you in your living room?  Try putting down and turning off all electronic devices and just sit in silence.  If your laying on your bed, turn everything off and take some slow deep breaths.

Did something good happen to you?  Did you relish that moment, that good feeling?  If you did that’s wonderful.   If you didn’t and were thinking about something else, it’s ok; I’ve done that myself.  I was thinking about the next thing I was going to do or question that compliment.

Advice and Tips

Here’s some advice and tips on how to balance the past, present, and future:

  • Take each day one day at a time
  • You don’t have tomorrow’s energy; you only have enough for today
  • It’s ok to not be ok.  You don’t need everything single thing in your life to be mapped out right now
  • You can add things, make changes along the way, and things can still be fine
  • Learn from your past and look forward and right in front of you
  • Forgive those who wronged you or forgive yourself
  • Be grateful for what you have
  • Appreciate the good people in your life
  • Dream about the future, but focus on what you can do today
  • Look back at past achievements, but don’t dwell on them

Wrap Up

Like Ferris Buehler once said “Life moves very fast.  If you don’t stop to look around once in awhile, you could miss it”.  It’s ok to think about your future.  It’s all right to make plans for your future.  You can have a general idea and be all right.  Where people make the mistake is that they try to map out very specifics details in a specific and sometimes condensed time frame.  They dwell on those plans for a majority of their day and sometimes neglect their health and friends and family.  They hope nothing unexpected will happen otherwise they believe everything can fall apart and chaos will rule their lives.

It’s all right to look back in your past to understand your roots.  What people fall victim to is getting caught up in those regrets and mistakes where they dwell on them and feel bad afterwards.  They try to change things that already happened to them in the hope that the outcome will change even if a lot of time has gone by.

Living in the present is one thing, but it doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t think ahead or make any plans for your future.  You can plan out your day like things to do in the morning, what you want to do after school or work, or what your having for dinner tonight.  If we want to change something about ourselves that we don’t like and is hurtful to others, sometimes we need to look back to our past to find where things started and work there.

Enjoy those good moments, accept those compliments, and remember it’s ok to stop and do nothing.  Take care of yourselves, stay safe, and remember your not alone and you have worth in this world.