JUST BREATHE: CONTROLLING SOCIAL ANXIETY

October 30, 2017 — Leave a comment

“Meditation is not to get out of society, to escape from society, but to prepare for a reentry into society.” — Thich Nhat Hanh, from Being Peace.

The more mindful you become of your daily activities, no matter how mundane they are, you can start to feel more alive. The best way I can describe it is to compare it as a synchronization between the mind and the body. The control factor is always you the practitioner. And what you control is your breathing. There are probably hundreds of techniques you could employ and you wouldn’t be wrong in any way as long as you can benefit from it.

For myself, it’s as simple as reminding you that you are alive. Or a breaking down of techniques found in zen practices in the wonderful books of Thich Nhat Hanh.

Breathing in, I calm my body.
Breathing out, I smile.
Dwelling in the present moment,
I know this is a wonderful moment.

Something as simple as this poem can help make the breathing practice more meaningful in the purpose and the question of “why.” I say why because sometimes, in the messy daily life and all the thoughts that can bombard us on a daily basis, we can forget why we do things.

Meditation has the potential to help you focus and be more intuned with your feelings and thinking. An irrational decision. An angry outburst. A feeling of being overwhelmed by pain and suffering. Sometimes we see the reaction and forget to notice the cause — the reason why we are brought to such an emotional state.

One of the biggest things that affect us today is Social Anxiety and I am beginning to realize the true benefits of having meditation part of your routine to help control and maintain a better sense of yourself to control your thoughts and reduce the anxiety but a good chunk.

Exercise is already known to make you feel better so combined that with a daily meditation practice and you’re going to work wonders on yourself.

There are so many methods out there an there are tons of free meditation apps that can help you get started. I highly recommend Insight Timer – Meditation App as it also includes free guided meditation recordings to suit your needs. My favorite is the ones that help you get ready for sleep and letting go of all the negative feelings of the stressful day. And the best part of this app is that it’s all for free!

But if you don’t want to use that stuff, it’s quite simple to always use the power of your breath to regain awareness to your surroundings and immediate feelings and emotions. This way, you can analyze what is truly happening in your thought process and see if it makes sense to feel scared or angry at something. Most times, there’s nothing to be angry about at all.

There are so many methods such as Transcendental Meditation but those schools of meditation require a payment and from my own studies, it’s basically using a mantra that is nonsensical to help focus on a point to allow your mind and body to synchronize.

They go for about 22 minutes a session and I think that is a good number if you can afford the time in the morning or night. Just find any random word, possibly a two-syllable word to link up with your in-breath and out-breath so that you can get into a deep mantra training.

Or if you want, just find a good existing mantra and use that to sustain a rhythm.

Overall, there are many ways to use mindfulness training and meditation techniques to help improve our health. If you are just getting started, try just a one-minute meditation practice in the morning and at night. Throughout the day, you can designate certain times to take three to five deep breaths to regain a freshness to your surroundings.

When you get used to this, feel free to slowly add more time on your meditation sessions. Don’t force it when the mental thoughts come flooding in. That’s natural. The important part is to realize that they exist and let them float on by and simply observe and be aware. That is the beauty of meditation.

That is the beauty of meditation.

 

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