How a Feeling of Safety and Security Allows Mindfulness in your Daily Life, Part 1
5 Tips to Achieving Mindfulness through Personal Security
We reached out to thought leaders, professionals and passion leaders in the mindfulness/wellness space to find solutions to the idea of how a feeling of safety, and reduction of anxiety and fearfulness in one’s life can lead to a more mindful and fulfilling lifestyle. We had an overwhelming response to this issue facing us all and exacerbated while we struggle with Covid-19 related social and personal issues.
Whether it’s with your family, your loved ones, or enjoying the simple moments of daily life, these ideas can help guide you through anxiety and fear-related distractions towards a more mindful life with greater peace-of-mind.
1) Safety and Security Equates to Mindfulness
Eli Bliliuos, a certified hypnotist based in New York City, specializes in helping clients overcome anxiety. He believes, “In hypnosis the unconscious mind can be programmed to release the fearful experiences of the past that trigger anxiety. Being free of anxiety and fear allows us to be present and in the moment. When we are present, we notice and experience the small things in life. Being present with our families allows us to really connect and enjoy the important experiences with our families.
Especially in the age of COVID19 it seems like many of us live in fear of what might happen/go wrong. When we do this, we are imagining a negative future or outcome.
Here is a tip, that when practiced regularly, can be a life-changing exercise. Whenever you feel unsafe or fearful, imagine floating out of your body to the ceiling, and looking down at yourself. From this perspective, you can learn to see things how they truly are. You do not have to be visual for this to work, you can simply imagine what you look like in that moment. Over time, this perspective can help you to overcome anxiety and in turn be more present.
Instead of imagining what might go wrong, you can be still and present.”
2) Re-program the Fear Response with Reiki
Los Angeles-based Reiki Master Teacher, Kristina Karim, an actress known from FX’s Peabody Award-winning show ‘Better Things’ the creator of Reiki & Roll, suggests “when we connect to fear, we are connecting to old programming and traumas that detaches us from the fact that it is our birthright that we feel empowered, loving, kind, abundant, creative, and so much more. That old programming can create disease in the physical body; AKA disease. When we become aware of this, it becomes easier to reflect, transmute, and move out of trauma or fear-based thoughts into higher vibrational thoughts and frequencies. A mindfulness practice like meditation or a breathing exercise can help move out of those fear-based states.
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3) Positive Self Talk
Dr. Alan Chu, Assistant Professor of Psychology at the University of Wisconsin – Green Bay, and a Certified Mental Performance Consultant who uses mindful self-compassion and healthy self-talk in his work with clients, emphasized the basic fact about anxiety and mindfulness:
“First, we need to realize that everyone has anxious and fearful thoughts, and it takes practice to be good at realizing and accepting them. Research by Psychologist Dr. Kristin Neff has shown that we all are critical of ourselves at times, which causes stress and anxiety. Learning how to use positive self-talk and mindfulness practices with self-compassion — a combination of mindfulness (be aware of our thoughts and emotions in the present moment), common humanity (realizing that everybody suffers and struggles, not just ourselves), and self-kindness (act compassionately and kindly toward ourselves)-can help us be less self-critical and reduce anxiety. Below are three sample statements of self-compassion that can go along with mindfulness practices:
A) I’m feeling really stressed/anxious right now (mindfulness helps with awareness and acceptance)
B) Everyone feels this way sometimes (common humanity helps us realize we are not alone)
C) May I be gentle and understanding with myself (self-kindness helps us be kind and understanding with ourselves).
After these self-compassion mantras, we are more likely to feel better and be able to be aware of what we can and cannot control in a certain situation (e.g., pandemic) to take helpful actions. For things we can control (wearing masks, physical distancing), we can use problem-focused strategies to reduce anxiety; for things we can’t control (death of loved ones, financial stress), we can using emotion-focused strategies to accept them and seek social support from others. This enhances a feeling of safety and security, physically and psychologically.
BOND Personal Security Services to Lead You on the Path to Mindfulness
4) The Lesson Covid is Here to Teach Us
Beth Tyson, MA, a Psychotherapist and Grief & Trauma Expert, uses mindfulness in her practice of therapy and focuses on the root cause in her approach.
“A lack of safety and trust in the world around us is the root cause of anxiety. In a Covid world, nothing feels safe and this constant fear triggers the brain to respond with survival behavior. Survival behavior looks like fighting/aggression, freezing (going numb/self-medicating), or fleeing / running away from the threats. Since none of these strategies are effective in terms of escaping the virus, we must use the only strategies left — mindfulness and radical acceptance. For the first time in most of our lives we are required to sit with the pain of the present moment. This is the lesson Covid is here to teach us. The only way through this circumstance to find a way to get comfortable with discomfort, feel our feelings and be totally at peace with complete uncertainty. If we can learn to master this, we will be able to overcome any adversity life throws our way. We need to be ok with feeling, instead of making feelings the villain. All feelings are a natural part of life, but we have bought into the idea that emotions are good and bad. We have the opportunity, right now, that we many never have again. We get to practice sitting in the uncomfortable emotions and realize they can’t hurt us. Imagine if as a mass we were able to come to terms with the fact that emotions can never hurt us? That Our only job is to let them exist. Imagine the suffering that this could relive. We can choose to allow emotions to flow through our perception, observe them, pay respect to them, learn from the message they bring, and then peacefully wait for the feelings to pass. And they will pass. Today is the only day any of us truly have. We can live it in fear and worry, or we can live it in acceptance for all experiences that come our way. That is the only control any of us truly have.
We can look at Covid as an opportunity to practice finding comfort within discomfort using acceptance for our predicament and accepting that we never had control over life in the first place. That’s really what all the anxiety is about, we are being confronted with the loss of control and certainty over our lives, when in reality we never had it to begin with. We can influence our lives, but we can’t control others or the world around us. We can only choose our response. Using mindfulness we focus on what we can control, and that is our thoughts and behaviors.
5) Communication is Key
Cassandra Fay LeClair, PhD, Department of Communication Studies at Texas State University, is a Communication Studies professor and teaches about communication across various types of interpersonal relationships. She recently wrote a book about her journey of healing from childhood trauma.
As I went through my healing period, it became clear to me that so much of my anxiety was centered on deep-rooted fears that I had never properly addressed. I created coping mechanisms that were keeping me in a state or worry, but that frantic space also felt normal. When things were calm I didn’t trust it, because I had conditioned my body to be in a state of panic.
Now I am much more conscious and aware of my triggers and the ways I was self-sabotaging.
My disordered thoughts used to rule my mind and I truly didn’t believe that was possible for me to be still. Now I am filled with peace that comes from deep within. By confronting my fears and working through my anxiety, I learned to quiet my mind. I am present in each moment and when that familiar rush of anxiety or fear creeps in, I am able to address it directly in that moment.
I could not be mindful in a way that felt helpful, true, or real prior to addressing my fear and anxiety. It has changed my life and it is my mission to help others do the same.
What I personally experienced is how I came to write my book. I had to break my patterns of anxiety so I could feel peace. I did this by journaling my thoughts and looking back at the entries for behavioral patterns. Upon doing so, I realized I was keeping myself in a state of fear through my disordered thoughts. I worked to undo those patterns and seek peace from within myself. I wrote my book because I felt called to help others do the same. I know I am not alone and I truly feel this can help others. Thank you for your work on this. If there is any way I can help, please reach out.”
Enjoy Bond. Stay safe. Keep the comments and recommendations coming,
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