Without us realizing, we often live in a space in our heads that is busy, anxious and stressed. If you suffer with anxiety or depression you will recognise this space all too well as it becomes your only space. There is nothing else.
Even if you’re not suffering anxiety and depression, most people can relate.
Often this space is filled with negative thoughts and feelings. Some may be based on your past, some may be about the future. The thoughts themselves, the ones that take up this space, will be personal to you. Based mainly on your life experiences and current situation. The thoughts themselves are not important. What’s important is breaking yourself away from this space in your head. I call this space in my mind the ‘Kiki radio’. When I’m tuned into this place, everything is scary and negative. When depression and anxiety are particularly bad, my radio plays full volume, high speed, 24/7.
So what can you do to change it?
I’ve talked about lots of techniques already, but one of my favourite tools is a visualisation.
I can guarantee when you’re in that space in your head, most of the tunes are negative. You become engulfed by worry and negative predictions. So getting out of that space is vital.
Mindfulness is key. It gives you a break from the noise and allows you to be present in the moment; watching the thoughts and noise as they pass, without judgement.
Visualisations are exercises in using your imagination to bring instant calm to the mind and in turn the body. They are able, with practice, to take you away from the chaos of anxiety, depression and painful feelings.
Consider that your mind is a blue sky. When things are good, the sky is clear. Very little clouds or rain. But quite often, when we’re stressed, the sky of your mind can turn into a thunder storm. And rather than step back and watch the storm pass, we try to run in it. And all that happens, is we get wet! Very wet!
What we don’t know is that above the storm is a clear blue sky. Calm and peaceful. It is always there. It is just that the storm rages so hard and for so long, that we forget the blue sky above.
My favourite visualisation for when the storm is raging, is to imagine myself rising above it. I imagine my myself floating above the dark storm and I look to the sunlight above. I allow my mind to be relaxed for a time and I realise in that peace, that all the noise below; all the rain, wind and thunder, is just that. It’s just noise. Nothing of importance. I look to the clear blue and peace comes. There is no flailing about in the storm. I simply rise above it. Allowing it to rage below, whilst having no effect on me and my well-being.
Trying a visualization for the first time is the same as trying anything new, it takes practice. You may not find it easy at first and you may not get the immediate relief. But with practice you will get better at detaching from your mind and find strength in the exercise, and hopefully you will start to realise that the noise that normally sweeps you away, can be avoided. You can rise to a place of calm and peace.
So try this exercise:
1. Go to a quiet place
2. Get yourself comfortable
3. Breathe. 10 deep breathes.
4. Close your eyes and continue to breathe deeply.
5. Allow your breathing to come to a normal pace and start your visualisation:
6. Imagine your minds eye, rising upwards. Allow your mind to float up. As you rise, you feel yourself distancing from the thoughts that distress you; you leave them below. You see a peace above. There is light, peace, calm. You feel disconnected from the noise and in a space of tranquility and strength. You are not affected by the thoughts below. You can see them as just a lot of noise. Enjoy the calm. Enjoy the realization that all the noise below, can’t affect you. Keep yourself in that place above. Relax into it.
7. Continue to breathe and stay in that place for as long as you want.
8. When you’re ready to move on, bring your attention back to the space around you. Notice noises and smells. Continue to breathe and slowly open your eyes.
Getting skilled at this visualization takes practice. But once you have the skill, you should be able to rise above at any point during the day. You will be able to calmly and without fuss, detach from the stress and bring about a sense of peace again.
There are hundreds of visualisations you can use. Do some research. If this particular visualization does not work for you, then Find one that strikes a chord. Visualizations have been proven tools for calming a raging mind. They go hand in hand with mindfulness and could mean the difference between full blown panic and calm.
Try rising above it all. Take some quiet time and go to your quiet place. visualize yourself rising above the storm. It can lift you away from the noise and take you to a place of peace and calm.
Remember, the calm is always there. You just have to tap into it. We get too caught up in our thoughts and feelings and they become the focus of all our energy. We take the noise too seriously. By remembering and tapping into the calm, we are able to move away from the thoughts and feelings. We are able to distance ourselves from the chaos and find peace and almost smile at the storm.
I hope you find this helpful my loves. Onwards. Kiki xox