Archives for August 2013

The Impermanence of Things

Rest in knowing that your problems are only temporary. Watch my short video about practical tools to help you manage difficult emotions using a concept in mindfulness called impermanence…

Try A Little Self-Compassion

Being too hard on yourself? Try using a technique called “NFL”:

1. NOTICE that your being hard yourself about something you’re not proud of

2. FORGIVE yourself for this. “Too error is human.”

3. LEARN/LET GO. Learn what you can from the experience and, then, do what you need to “let go of it.”

Compassion 3

Mindfulness & Personal Resilience

Neuroscientist Richard Davidson and mindfulness expert Jon Kabat-Zinn tell us how mindfulness training can lead to greater resilience to stress. Check-out the short video; it’s inspiring!




What is Distorted Thinking? How Can I Manage It?

One common distorted way-of-thinking is called “All-or-Nothing” Thinking. For example, we believe we have to be “perfect” or we’re a total failure. The next time you notice having thoughts like these, try using these 3 steps to keep from becoming “entangled” in distorted perceptions of reality:

1. RECOGNIZE the presence of a distorted thought by mentally labeling it as such. For example, you might say to yourself: “There’s a distorted thought” or “That’s All-or-Nothing Thinking.”

2. PLAY a game around the distorted thought by asking yourself the question: “This thought is probably not true; what are 3 others ways of thinking about this situation?”

3. REFOCUS your attention away from the distorted thought and onto the physical sensations of breathing; do this for at least one minute.

Beyond Your Every Thought

Businessman ThinkingWould it help to know that your thoughts are really harmless? They are. Neuroscientists tell us that our thoughts are nothing more than electrical signals passing from one brain cell to the next; usually fading within a matter of moments. No matter, if you’re like most people, you may find it all-too-easy to take your thoughts personally; believing what they have to “say” about a number of things important to you, like: What you must look like to other people; how well you are liked; whether or not you are “good enough” for this situation or that. The problem is that these thoughts may not be true. And, believing thoughts that are not true–especially if they’re about important things–can leave you very upset. Feelings of self-doubt, sadness, and anxiety can arise when your beliefs are “hooked” onto thoughts that, well…just aren’t true.

Would it help to know that you could let upsetting thoughts pass you by? You can. Mindfulness practice teaches us that one of the best ways to “unhook” ourselves from upsetting thoughts is not to get hooked in the first place. Seeing thoughts for what they are–energy passing through the mind–is one way to keep from becoming attached to upsetting thoughts. You might say to yourself, “Oh, that’s just a bit of energy passing through my mind…no need to get upset” when noticing a troubling thought you’re tempted to believe.

Another way to keep from getting hooked is to see your thoughts as just a small part of your present-moment experience. For example, if you happen to find yourself having a troubling thought, you might remind yourself that this thought is really only a very small part of what’s happening inside and around you. You might ask yourself: “Is this the only thing that’s going on right now?” “What else is happening in my body besides this thought?” Or, “What other things are happening around me that are not this thought?” When you make it a habit to become aware of everything else that’s going on in the moment–besides your troubling thoughts–you begin to discover all the other choices you have besides believing-your-every-thought. –Written by Tony Madril