Rumination "I really messed up" mentality is a hallmark sign of depression.
Fear of the future ("what if. . ." ) on the other hand keeps us stuck in anticipatory anxiety.
Being in the present moment ("here and now") is where we want to be and have the ability to change. We are not distracted by rumination on the past or worries about the future, but centered in the present. The practice is called mindfulness.
Getting out of your head and being mindful can be challenging, especially if you're used to overthinking or feeling overwhelmed by your thoughts. Here are a few tips to help you get started:
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Let me set the stage for two scenes.
Scene 1: The dinner table is laden with food. Mum's getting the roast out of the oven. She's yelling for someone to help. Dad has poured himself yet another whiskey. Sister is draped over the arm of the latest has-been and shouts at you to go help. You came alone and don't have anyone to entertain anyway. Brother laughs and tells a funny story about a childhood exploit involving you two and he was victor (of course). Funny to everyone except you, that is. Some dubious guest whose name you didn't quite catch is droning away about her job. Her bratty 6 year old is taking sly potshots at your ear with a sling toy. The decor is garish, the music is tinny, the wine cheap. You wish you could be anywhere but here. But would die of guilt for ditching the "family" on "(insert holiday here) Day"!
Scene 2: You wake up at 6am, as usual. Hmm..no newspaper, put the coffee machine on, put food in the dog bowl, switch on the TV for the news while you get ready to walk the dog. Realize it is "(insert holiday here) Day"! Oh no! Your mind immediately goes back to yester-years. Your unhappiness with the new boss, the crazy divorce, the friends who had to choose sides, the teenage kids who want, want, want from you and then disappear once they get 'it'. Few family and a dwindling set of boozy friends sending you pity invites. You decline with some feeble excuse. Your feelings are too raw to deal with probing questions. Now what? The holiday stretches ahead like an endless tunnel. Isn't everyone with family having a wonderful time like the ads on TV. You are a good person. You don't deserve this. Down the rabbit hole you go chasing one negative thought after another...
How to do Holidays like a Boss!!
Truly, once you decide to act rather than react to what life throws at you...the possibilities are endless.
Till the new year...be well!
The author is an Anxiety & Toxic Manipulation Recovery Coach, Certified Hypnotist, Reiki Master, and Self Healing Expert. She got fed up of being pushed around and bullied and started to educated herself to swim confidently with sharks. An expert on the topic, she now negotiates uncharted territory confidently and is thrilled to share her knowledge with others.