Madeleine Eames

- Psychotherapist
- Mindfulness Teacher

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What are you practicing?

 

 “We are what we think. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts, we make the world.” – Buddha

 

Most of us practice subconsciously all day long. It might be practicing worry, planning, ruminating, dreaming, wishing… but whatever it is, that is what we are programming. Often, we’re not aware of what programs we are running until we shine the light of awareness on it. How do we do that? Slow down and notice. In other words, bringing mindful attention to what thoughts are running your engine. With 50-70,000 thoughts each day, you really have to practice to even notice them! A good clue is to tune in to what you are feeling.. if something is amiss, check out the thoughts you are running.

We run ‘stories’ all day… mostly about other people since that seems to be where the majority of stress comes from, after finances.

Neuroplasticity, or the discovery that we have the ability to change our brains at any age, has done miracles in the world of health, but, conversely, it also tells us that we can wire our brains for unhappiness as well. I see this all the time with people who suffer with anxiety, depression, chronic pain and trauma. We know our brains veer towards the negative to keep us safe, so we need to work consistently and diligently in the other direction.

 

What stories are you currently practicing? Can you find some exceptions to that story, in other words, is that story really, absolutely true? Is there a story that feels better.. usually that one is more realistic.

 

Set a timer, put up sticky notes, find a way to make a system to check in and change your thoughts to positive, or more realistic ones. The latest research from Georgetown University states that when one practices feeling gratitude or someone or something for 30 seconds, six times a day, in as little as 2 weeks those little neurons start firing together, and more often. I don’t know about you, but I think that’s great news!!

Have a great week!

 

“You cannot change what you are not aware of.”

Thomas Sterner  “The Practicing Mind”

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