Have you ever wondered about how our mind works overtime? Even when we do nothing, those thinking wheels are constantly turning – going through a loop of planning, worrying, freaking out over things to do or simply stressing over something or other. While it is great to have a busy life, this can frequently result in overwhelm and overload.
Personally, I revel in a hectic routine. I enjoy being busy and I remember how my colleagues at work always joked about how I loved to work under pressure – my own. I have this crazy habit of tackling several things at a time. Why, I even read at least three books simultaneously. I like to think my brain is wired that way. But the truth is, it is necessary to switch off that constant noise in our head at least for a little while, if only to prevent ourselves from getting stressed. I’ve realized that having our hands full can also stop us from noticing the little things that bring joy through our day – in essence, prevent us from living mindfully.
Today, let’s look at some happy ways to spring clean our minds periodically. While I know that you are familiar with most of these and already practice them, I thought it might be nice to revisit them – sometimes a reminder helps when you get caught up with your serious stuff, as you are, right now.
Preferably with someone whose company you enjoy. This is a wonderful way to catch up on things you usually don’t get a chance to talk about and also enjoy some laughter in the process. I am thinking of our daily walks on our terrace that are so much fun. While at it, don’t forget to notice the groups of birds – parrots, kites, crows, pigeons, mynahs, and finally, bats winging across the sky competing with the clouds, as you enjoy the sunshine and the beauty of the setting sun. What better way to quiet your mind?
Write in your diary
If there is something bothering you or if there is something on your mind you are not yet ready to share with someone, write it down in your diary. It helps tremendously. I am happy that one of the things that relax you is writing poetry and music. Yes, I am thinking of your lovely impromptu verse and lyrics!
You know, when I don’t hear you humming, I know your mind is busy. When you are through with your exams and back to a steady routine, bring back your music practice. I remember your Grandma saying that singing is an inbuilt way to heal – you do not need any entertainment because you can sing to yourself. That applies to us, too – we enjoy your voice so much!
Just sit quietly and breathe steadily for ten minutes.
Watch a comedy
Oh yes, laughter is always the best medicine. Even better when you have company.
One of the best things about being blessed with creative abilities like sketching, painting and more is never having to wonder what to do. I know you use this as an outlet. So enough said!
Finally, I have a special tip for you for those moments when you feel a little sad or in low spirits. It also works for those times when your mind feels overcrowded.
- Just sit comfortably in your favorite spot.
- Think of five things that make you absolutely happy, no matter what. Memorize this list and give it a little space in your head.
- You needn’t always have the same list – it can refresh to any five favorite memories depending on the stage of life you are at.
- Now pull this list out when you need to quiet your mind or cheer you up and enjoy the feeling of reliving those moments.
This method works for me beautifully. In fact, I have an ongoing happiness list I enjoy updating on a daily basis.
I used to write down only the major moments, but realized, a few years ago, that the little things make us laugh the most and probably bring the most happiness. Like that moment you were eight months old, when you’d sing along with an “aah” each time you heard us sing…then years later, when you would listen to something just once and sing it back perfectly with your own lyrics…the day you peeled and cut potatoes for the first time…the memory of you and your Grandma spending hours over those huge jigsaw puzzles…the way you quietly do the chores when I have work deadlines – the list is endless for me, you know.
The best advice your Grandma gave me was “learn to enjoy your own company”. I pass this on to you with love.
Love and hugs
Blessed to be your Mom!
A to Z Challenge 2015 – going with the theme “letters to my son”
Q for Quiet your mind
Q is for Question – Can you eat out when you have diabetes – at Life Hacks for Diabetics
Q is for – yes – Quiet your mind at Life Hacks for Happiness