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How Your Attention Shapes Your Life Experience

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The most important thing is to realize that you do have choices. Where you go in your head you go in your body – so it’s important to choose what you want to invest your attention and energy in. When you notice a stress thought: breathe down to the ground and feel the weight of your body being supported and become aware of the air on your face.

Most of us want to feel more stable, balanced and secure in ourselves and yet spend a great deal of our time doing things that guarantee the opposite happens. We are regularly bombarded with stimuli, squeezed by schedules and pushed to our limits by the demands of our own expectations and others. The trouble is that being creatures of habit, we come to normalize this, and take everyday stress as a ‘given’ in life. There are some simple things we can do on a daily basis to help us create that much needed sense of balance and space – and it’s all about where we choose to place our attention.

The importance of attention:

The most important thing is to realize that you do have choices. Where you go in your head you go in your body – so it’s important to choose what you want to invest your attention and energy in. Each time you think about something in an overtly negative way – for instance catastrophizing about something, you are, effectively, building a disaster movie in which you star! As your body doesn’t know the difference between imagining something and it happening, it goes ahead and triggers the Fight or Flight response and produces stress hormones as if it were real. As a result, you’ll feel tense and tired from the experience. It’s easy to put the blame on ‘life’, when, in fact, you’ve caused yourself the discomfort and anxiety by ‘running’ that thinking stress pattern.

Start to do something different instead. When you notice an anxiety or stress-making thought starting to take shape in your mind, do the following:

– Step away from the thoughts, (and out of the trance you’ve created for yourself), by bringing your attention to the ground beneath your feet and the simple here and now around you.
– Breathe down to the ground.
– Feel the weight of your body being supported and become aware of the air on your face.
– Take a few moments to engage with the steadiness of the ground beneath you.
– Have a sense of your out-breath flowing down your body, releasing any stress into the ground
– Let the steadiness beneath you begin to steady your body, mind and feelings
– Breathe the steadiness of the ground up into your body
– Notice the difference in how you feel

Remember, most behavior and thought patterns are just habits you’ve learnt over time that sit at an unconscious level. Awareness gives you choices, and putting a little energy into breaking those old patterns and creating new, more useful ones will repay you handsomely. So beware of what you choose to engage your attention in – it’s shifting your shape constantly.

 

Linda Hall
Expert

Linda Hall combines down-to-earth pragmatism with insight and sensitivity, her contemporary approach to meditation focuses on body/mind awareness and stress management techniques and does not align itself with any particular belief system or religion. Linda draws on modern psychology and well-established practices such as mindfulness, as well as more body centred forms of meditation. She presents meditation skills as a set of practical, life-enhancing tools for reducing stress that anyone can easily incorporate into everyday life to support their health and well-being. A practitioner and teacher of great warmth and integrity, Linda has a genuine enthusiasm about the power we all naturally possess to bring about positive personal change in our lives.

Linda Hall
Expert

Linda Hall combines down-to-earth pragmatism with insight and sensitivity, her contemporary approach to meditation focuses on body/mind awareness and stress management techniques and does not align itself with any particular belief system or religion. Linda draws on modern psychology and well-established practices such as mindfulness, as well as more body centred forms of meditation. She presents meditation skills as a set of practical, life-enhancing tools for reducing stress that anyone can easily incorporate into everyday life to support their health and well-being. A practitioner and teacher of great warmth and integrity, Linda has a genuine enthusiasm about the power we all naturally possess to bring about positive personal change in our lives.

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Robbie Henry
Robbie Henry 5pts

What about if you lose some of your frontal lobe? Any foods that might regenerate brain cells?

Fermina Andrade
Fermina Andrade 5pts

Im right brained because I'm left handed...Im very artistic,creative, and emotional...I suck at math lol \U0001f602\U0001f602\U0001f602