There is a quote from the book, The Mastery of Self by don Miguel Ruiz. Jr. that says “Worry is a total waste of time. It doesn’t change anything. All it does is steal your joy and keeps you very busy doing nothing.” A friend of mine shared this and I responded, “but we are so good at it.”

Every human being knows about worry, which is a thought, and anxiety, which is our emotional, physical, and chemical responses to our worries. Anxiety is about something and, most often, its origin is in our thinking. That is not to say that some worries and anxiety are not needed and/or helpful yet if we don’t develop the ability to observe, from a neutral stance, our thoughts, they run us.

When increasing our ability to observe our thoughts, we identify those that support us and those that don’t. Vipassana meditation teaching us the practice of naming any thought that rises up, i.e., worry, fear, anticipation, judging, delight. By doing that, you watch the thoughts drift by and don’t grab on to it. That’s the trick. Rather than grabbing onto a non-supportive thought and giving it credence, you let it pass by as if it is blowing in the wind. This allows a little space between the thought and the response and gives you the opportunity to decide to further entertain the thought or to just let it go. Granted, this is harder than it sounds, but there are worries that can’t control and those that we can choose to think about or not.

#Justfortoday Begin to notice your thoughts, especially when are having difficulty focusing, a strong emotion arises, or your body is having a reaction. Name it and then decide whether you’ll let it run you or you will let it pass by.

Theresa Gale