So, I was reading a post today from someone that to me seems like a wise person. I have read before but today seemed so like much more than before. You are probably saying, “Mrs. Tea, what did he say? Get on with it already.” Well, hold on. Hold on. I am getting there. For goodness sake it is only a few sentences into this post. You guys always want to rush me to the good stuff. Ha ha.
He said that he only tried concentrating for a short amount of time so that he was in the present moment. He said he would only focus on the present and not the past or the future during this time. I had thought it admirable the last time I read it, but today it just seemed to make me really stop and think. You see, with my anxiety it is hard to stay in the moment. I always thought of it as something that would never be attainable. But today, I decided that I would set my timer app that shuts off my screen for 15 minutes. That way it would stop the music that I have playing in the background. Then, I would do whatever the task was for only 15 minutes and then redecide if I wanted to continue forward or do something else.
Now, I am sure some of you already do things like this with the Forest app or something similar if you are in school to focus on homework and studying, but I am saying this so you can use it for another purpose.
You see, I am going to try to hack my system. Not my computer system, but my own being. I am going to try to focus on my writing, my cleaning, everything for just 15 minutes for the next 24 hours. Then after the 15 minutes is up, I am going to just sit for a brief moment and look at what I have accomplished. Right now, for example, I just wrote about a page for this article. And I didn’t feel the anxiety to focus that I had previous days when I had opened up my page and freaked out about what I would write. I knew I just needed to keep going for 15 minutes. Nothing more. And the funny thing is I wanted to set the next 15 minutes to write some more. And of course, I didn’t have to look at my watch to see how much longer I had in the evening or even get freaked out about how long it would be before I got done. I just set the timer for 15 minutes and knew my music would just turn off when the time was done. It didn’t seem so pressured.
Now, why am I telling you this? Because I think I have found the way for me to hack the part of my brain that couldn’t find the present moment when trying to accomplish a task, because it is only a short period of time and I know that I can redecide then if I want to continue. Also, if I decide to go in a different direction in 15 minutes, I can always decide to come back.
I know that some of you are going, “Mrs. Tea, I have know this for years”, but others of you might be thinking exactly like I am. "I am just blown away by how I can become so mindful with one little trick."
I am going to try this with exercise tomorrow too. I am going to have my tablet turn off at 15 minutes and see if I want to continue. I know without a doubt that I can do any of my videos for 15 minutes and I won’t be focused on the countdown on the screen for a thirty minute workout. I will just know that it will turn off and I can redecide after a short 15 minutes. And then I am totally focused only to the exercises and not to whether I can do the whole video or not.
Like right now, I am totally immersed in this post and not focused on the end. I am focused to the next word and only the next word.
I think that I am rambling on about this, but I guess sometimes I just want to share my new ideas with all of you deer. It is almost a need to let you deer know about what great benefits I am feeling, so that you can benefit too.
So, I have worked on this post for 45+ minutes, and decided every time the music stopped that I was going to place a few stickers in my journal and then continue on.
I want you to know that I am not sharing this with you as a study aide or anything of the sort. I am sharing this with you as a mindfulness tool. Maybe even as an anxiety buster. You can probably use this in a lot of areas of your life.
I am so excited about this idea and how I might have found the next big thing to manage anxiety in my life. I really do love telling you about the ideas I have to make your life better. I hope you like them and share them with your friends.
Well, I am off. I think I have rambled on enough. I truly do love all of you.
Now go. Be safe. Know that you are not alone.
PS I will write a followup article later to tell you how my 24 hours went. :)