#grounded: a blog series days 11, 12 & 13
I wake up everyday roll over and take my thyroid pill. Spend 20-30 more mins in bed while my body shifts into being awake. I get up. I pee. I stumble to the kitchen and I make myself a coffee in my white YETI mug with 2 tablespoons of soy creamer and 1 tablespoons of hazelnut almond creamer. I go back to my bed and do my 5 minute gratitude journal.
Once I am done writing that I aim for a meditation. I either read a raise your vibration meditation and meditate on that, or I listen to a guided meditation, or I just sit there and think and let my mind wander where it wants. I accept that my mind is busy with uncertainty and right now that is okay.
As this pandemic unfolds – it is hard for me to really process that it is even happening. 1000s of people around the globe are dying – even more are sick. Most of the world is in some sort of isolation or quarantine. People are so used to not really dealing with their thoughts that when thrust into solitude or suddenly not being able to get super distracted they feel the discomfort. I am no different.
I am here to tell you that the best thing you can do right now is WHATEVER THE FUCK YOU NEED TO DO. But also to say – if you are struggling with getting your mind right here are some useful tips for trying out meditation and why gratitude might be a good place to start. We all have time to carve out new routines so why not start now?!
There are plenty of reasons to get into mediation right now. We have a lot of thoughts swirling around these days and sometimes I can admit it gets a bit overwhelming. This is why I have been leaning into some meditation time. Meditation helps with changing our thought processes. It helps us slow down, relax and manage our stress. It really is a time to check in with yourself. Dive into your inner Buddha and just make sure you are okay. There are plenty of studies that show that meditation helps to improve anxiety and depression and certainly in this time – we are feeling a lot of anxiety and uncertainty.
If you are just diving into this kind of practice – a few helpful tips. It takes time to build up mediation practice so start with 3 mins or 5 mins or something manageable. There are TONS of apps out there and youtube videos that can walk you through a guided meditation. Commit to trying a few out. It is okay if you get distracted and your mind wanders. It happens to the best of us. Notice it and move on. Realize that meditation is a way to check in with yourself – do that how you want. You don’t need hippie music and zen candles. You can do this however it works for you.
Are you thankful for the things in your life? You probably are. Why not spend some time acknowledging it?
There are lots of scientific studies that prove the benefits of expressing gratitude. Taking a small portion of your day to hone in on things that you are grateful for can really shift the way you think. Sometimes I think we get so busy that we forget to focus on the things we are grateful for. Why not make a list of things that you appreciate in your life or a list at the end of the day of 3 things that you were grateful for that day. Heck some days I am just grateful that the barista made my order correctly at Starbucks – – my point, it does not need to be massive things each day but just a way to shift yourself to think about the good things that happened.
Appreciating things in your life is not forgetting or dismissing things that are not good right now. I am not saying we need to forget that what we are all going through sucks. It is just a way to shift your thinking for a small portion of your day into something different.
- Gratitude opens the door to more relationships.
- Gratitude improves physical health.
- Gratitude improves psychological health.
- Gratitude enhances empathy and reduces aggression.
- Grateful people sleep better.
- Gratitude improves self-esteem.
- Gratitude increases mental strength.
What kind of information are you consuming right now? Are you glued to the TV watching updates on the spread of the pandemic? Are you at home paralyzed in fear that going outside most certainly means death or sickness. If you are – maybe it is time to really start some mindful thinking.
Someone great once said that ‘thoughts become things’. If you spend all your time worried and stressed about the worst case scenario – that is likely what is going to happen. Have you ever noticed when you start to truly believe something horrible is going to happen that eventually that is what happens? Crazy, right?! Well maybe not so much – maybe there is some serious connection between what we believe to be true and what is truth. Next time you catch yourself thinking really negative fear based thoughts try and switch up your thinking. When you are scrolling on Facebook or Instagram and you see those posts that are just plain shitty – unfollow, disconnect. You control you. You control your social media and you control the content that you chose to fill your head with. So choose wisely.
Choosing how to spend your time while socially distanced from your friends and family is all about what feels good to you. After I spend my time reading, watching YouTube, watching Netflix and maybe going for a walk or getting some sort of exercise. It is time for me to go to bed. I have easily been losing track of my days and time in general but I always finish my day with a small reflection on things that made the day great. And one thing I could have done to make the day better. Starting and ending my day with a small moment of hopefulness sure has done wonders on shifting my mindset to things I really want out of this life. And, in a time like this – it is pretty much what I am relying on to get me through it.