Monday, November 21, 2016

Expand Your Mind and Relieve Some Pressure-Step 7

It is Step 7 and time to expand our minds.  I wrote about deep thinking this morning as a preamble to talking about the next step to improving our mental health.  In the last step we started self reflecting and learning to self-monitor.  These are great tools that help us understand and modify our goals as we progress on our journey.  We begin to monitor our behaviours so that we can identify any changes from day to day, and also to take time to think about things that happened throughout our days.

With self-reflection, we ask questions of ourselves to gain a better understanding of our day and our past.  When we take thinking to a deeper level, we gain a deeper understanding.  Digging deeper into our thoughts allows us to expand and open up our minds.  We have learned how to begin removing negative things from our minds, but this is how we add more space in which to process.

The more we ask deep questions of ourselves the more our mind begins to open up to new ideas and thoughts.  Imagine having a thousand fish in a small fish bowl; there would be little room for them to move around in.  Now imagine putting those fish into a lake; they would be much more free to swim.  Our mind and thoughts are similar to this analogy.  When our mind is full, we can either empty it, or expand it.

When we cease to be rigid in our thinking, our minds get the ability to explore new terrain.  The more we allow our minds to explore and search for new things, the more it grows.  The mind will often drag us into negative thinking processes, especially if we are depressed or in a low state of mind.  When you take time to dig deeper than the surface of your thoughts, you can guide your own journey.

Ask questions that you want to know answers to, or at least ones that you want reasoned for yourself.  Process the questions and answers and you will likely develop new questions.  Deep thinking wants you to keep asking questions until you are satisfied with whatever answer you receive.  I do warn you though, don't go through dark thought processes unless you are in a good state of mind.  Depression and anxiety can lead us to questions we are not ready to process yet.  Take care of those thoughts in a controlled and safe environment, and with a well trained person.

When you do feel ready though, try doing some deeper self-reflection a little at a time.  Start to find answers that you did not even know that you had questions for.  The more you practice this step, the better you will understand yourself, and the more your mind will expand.  As your mind expands you will find some pressure relief.  The more you practice, the less pressure you will feel each day.

Take some time for your self and find a quiet spot.  Take a few deep breaths in through the nose, and out through the mouth.  Close your eyes and ask yourself a question about something positive in your life.   Stay quiet and continue to ask questions until you are satisfied with the answers you have received.  Take a couple more deep breaths and enjoy the good feeling, even if it only lasts momentarily.  The more often you try this, the longer the good feeling will last.

Have a great day everyone!

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