Attention to just "being"

Many of us are feeling overwhelmed and depleted. Family issues, politics and war, the economy, our jobs, our health, all occupy our thoughts. We worry about the future and may be obsessed with things in our past. All of these concerns weigh us down and we may not know how to start caring for ourselves in such challenging times.

It can be as simple as taking one or two minutes, a couple of times per day, and just stopping. Stopping doing whatever you are doing. Closing your eyes if you can, taking a deep breath in and then letting it out. As you sit (or stand or lie down), noticing that you are breathing, that there is an in-breath and an out-breath. Noticing the sounds that are present in this moment. Bringing awareness to the sensations in your body. And then, just letting yourself be for a minute or two…

When you are done, pay attention to how you are feeling now. Do you notice a difference from just a couple of minutes ago? This is how it feels to be present. Being present is one of the best ways to start caring for yourself-more on this later. For now, just practice “being” a couple of times a day and see what happens…

Linda Oxford

Linda Oxford, MS, MA, LPC, RYT500

Linda has a private mental health counseling practice in Rochester Hills and Alden (seasonally), Michigan. She provides compassionate and confidential psychotherapy and Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) classes, meditation and yoga training to people, groups and businesses wanting to learn to decrease anxiety and depression, cope with chronic physical or emotional pain, improve health and well-being, and gain greater satisfaction with life.

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