Updated: Oct 17
I’m not sure if it’s because it’s nearing the end of the year, or it was the last full moon, or a planet in retrograde or the fact that the world feels like it is in utter chaos - I am feeling overwhelmed. And when that happens I often feel flat and tired as just plain ole Meh.
Everyone knows that meditating, exercising, journaling are all great ways to reset, heck I know that but the problem is mustering the energy to do all these things that are good. Instead I got stuck in a cycle of beating myself up and guilt tripping myself.
To me, treating & priming the mind is the first step even before we launch into some action plan. It is more important to get a cognitive change and free the mind from being stuck in a loop. Cognition refers to "Higher" brain functions such as complex reasoning, conceptual thinking, focus, and managing emotions.
Here are a few 5 min tips that work:
1. Clear The Space
Just imagine that your mind is a computer programme that has every single programme opened. You know your computer is going to run slow and it will not operate efficiently. So this little exercise is for you to shut down some of your programmes and free up some mental space. I like to close my eyes and just imagine an event, an emotion, a thought and I shut it down like I’m quitting a programme. We are simply putting aside the white noise in our heads for a moment. I do it till I generally feel a sense of clearness. It’s a quick and easy Mindfulness exercise.
2. Manage the Guilt
What is it about us and guilt! It’s like somehow women are born with this Guilt gene that gets activated over the smallest things.
Didn’t do your self-care practice? Guilt!
Didn't finish your to-do list? Guilt!
Didn’t make a home cook meal for the family? Guilt!
Feeling bad from Guilt? More Guilt
When it comes to emotions, journaling is a good way to release and get it out. But if you just can’t even get to a pen and piece of paper, like I was feeling, this is an easy technique that helps manage your emotions. As soon as you start to feel guilt, use your imagination, turn to your Guilt and say out loud, “I see you, I hear you, I acknowledge you.” Allow yourself to really mean it. Like you are a kind compassionate friend who gives Guilt a big old hug. This works for other overwhelming emotions too. While you are not getting to the root cause of it, it helps provide some relief should that emotion overwhelm you into in-action.
3. Recognise the Inner Critic
Often it’s an Inner Critic just going to town and having a field day with you by triggering the guilt, shame, anxiety. This is a good time to identify the Inner Critic and also manage the Inner Critic. Now I have written about Inner Critics in a separate Blog Post, please do read it if you are plagued by your Gang of Bullies to understand more. For this Blog Post, I’m just going to share another technique to handle them. As soon as you become aware of negative self talk, say very loudly NO! And make a chopping motion with your hand as you say or shout the word NO from your solar plexus. This helps separate you from the energies of your Inner Critic and makes you aware that the inner voices are not you and you are not them.
4. Be Compassionate
Give yourself Permission, whatever permission it is you need - whether it’s to take a nap, to not have a clean house, to be Meh, to procrastinate, to go out and play. Just take a deep breath and give yourself permission to be messy, flawed and fabulous. That takes real compassion to give yourself a break and to not punish yourself. So much of our anxiety comes from ourselves and not allowing any room for less than perfect behaviour.
Well those are some of my Free My Mind 5min hacks that I do to give myself that boost. Try these tips, let me know what if they have helped you in any way.