A Mindful Start to the Week



Book_mindfulness_workbook_2010 A lot of people take a few days after a holiday off from work. Whether your holiday is  Easter or Passover, many schools and colleges are on break, the weather is warming up and spirits tend to be brighter, more hopeful.

To encourage this good feeling I went online to check in on one of my favorite blogs, Mindfulness and Psychotherapy by Elisha Goldstein, PhD. A licensed psychologist, Dr. Goldstein integrates traditional psychotherapy with progressive mindfulness practice to help people find mental and emotional
healing. I like this approach and have found it a logical enhancement of cognitive and dialectical behavioral therapy.

Today I found this post. The quotes are great because they distill the essence of what I try to teach people to slow down their negative thinking, to detach from it enough to reframe the problem or respond to the negativity in a more reasonable manner. In addition, Dr. Goldstein suggests a mindful way to get the most out of each quote. Try it out. Here is an excerpt from Dr. Goldstein's article:

Now, we’re not just going to glance over these quotes, I’m going to suggest that you take at least 30 seconds with each quote doing the following 5-step mindfulness practice.

  1. Get centered — Take a moment to just notice your
    body here, noticing any tension and seeing if you can choose to let
    that tension go. Become aware that you’re breathing.
  2. Read the quote twice – Reading it twice allows it to settle in a bit more.
  3. Allow the words to simmer — Close your eyes and
    see if you can let the words roll around and notice what arises for you
    physically, emotionally and mentally. In other words, let these words
    percolate in your mind and body. Do any thoughts, memories, or
    associations arise? Is there a tension or loosening in the body? Do
    emotions of fear, joy, or calm arise? Whatever arises this is grist for
    the mill.
  4. Bring your mind back if it wanders — You may
    notice the mind going off into thoughts of what you need to be doing or
    judgments such as “how is this going to be helpful to me?” Just note
    where it wandered to and gently guide it back. As Larry Rosenberg says
    in his book Breath by Breath, repeat this step several billion times.
  5. Come back to the breath – Thank yourself for
    taking this time-out of your daily busy-ness to engage with this
    mindful inquiry for your health and well-being.

Even if you only get through one quote, you can come back at later times to work with the others.

Here we go.

“Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space
is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth
and our freedom.”
  ~ Victor Frankl

To read the entire article click here.

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