Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Mind over natter ... sorta ...

Going through a breakup.

It hurts.

Racing thoughts ... obsession sessions ... ruminating ... the whole deal.

Aha, think I -- I should be practicing mindfulness.

So I picture myself lying on soft, green grass of a quiet field.

I picture my thoughts and feelings as soft, puffy clouds ... just moving across the blue, blue sky.  Try letting them appear ... and move across the sky ... and disappear, unjudged ... untouched by me....

Suddenly, the clouds begin to change shape.  They become ... airplanes ... airplanes with the rotund contours of World War II planes in Warner Brothers cartoons.  More and more clouds become airplanes ... and then they start dropping bombs on me -- hundreds of tiny bombs falling from the sky and exploding all around me as I lie on the grass.

Hmmm, I think.  That's pretty funny. Not particularly mindful, granted, but still, actually pretty funny.

Then I remember what my therapist said the last time we talked.  What should I do, I asked, when I am trying to sit with thoughts and feelings without following them ... but without running away from them, either?

Ask yourself, he said, What do I need to do to take care of myself right now?

Answer: laugh.
Answer: invent funny methaphor to impress therapist.
Answer: Remember to ask the question.

Done and done.

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