Are there situations in your life that are causing you anxiety? Almost everyone can relate to the tension and disquiet brought on by everyday stress. But if you find anxiety has found a rooted home in your every waking hour, it may be time to explore meditation for anxiety.
What is Anxiety?
It is a disorder that causes fear, nervousness, worry, doubt and apprehension… ‘disorder’ meaning a disruption in the normal mental and emotional functioning. And it can be debilitating.
Trying to function normally when you’re suffering from anxiety is like trying to NOT think about a purple elephant in your kitchen. Once that thought is in your head, it won’t leave. It keeps circling around and around, feeding on itself until you’re an emotional wreck.
Meditation can help. In fact, meditation is a very effective way to completely eliminate anxiety at the source.
Step one is to meditate every day. You might be under the impression that meditation is a waste of time – after all, it’s just sitting around doing nothing… but in reality, meditation is one of the best time investments you can ever make. It’s the investment in YOU. If you can only squeeze 15 minutes out of your day for silent contemplation, then that’s a great start. There’s no rule that says the longer you meditate the better. 15-30 minutes of quality meditation is better than 24 hours of la-di-da unfocused meditation.
You may think that 15 minutes is not long enough to get into the meditative state. If you use traditional meditation methods, you may be right. Sometimes – especially if you’re feeling anxious and upset – focusing your mind, relaxing and silencing your thoughts is practically impossible. That’s where it’s great to use a brainwave entrainment program like Omharmonics meditation audio.
Omharmonics binaural beats create the brainwave state of meditation for you. All you have to do is put on your headphones, push play and relax. Before you know it, you’re meditating! Even getting into meditation can make you anxious so it’s nice to have something like Omharmonics meditation music to make the process effortless!
Step two is monitoring your thoughts so you can identify the ones that are causing you anxiety and choosing different thoughts. On any given day, your mind plays infinite loops of the same couple of topics. Most of the time these center around stuff that worries you. It can be relationships, jobs, money problems, health issues, whatever. You’ll become very clear on these while you listen to your mental chatter during meditation.
A lot of these infinite loops of negative thoughts fly under the radar of conscious awareness. Meditation opens the door to knowing what your mind is up to. Once you’re aware of your thoughts, you can immediately change them. Choose to think positively instead of negatively. This will prepare your mind to look for solutions. Focus on the ideal scenario, not the problem!
Step three is taking a different point of view. If there’s another person involved, try to put yourself in their shoes and see the situation from their perspective. If you’re battling something on your own, then put yourself in the imaginary position of someone who has overcome what you’re going through. Really use that imagination. Nothing can go wrong in your imagination unless you want it to so feel free to dream up a happy solution for all of your problems. It doesn’t matter if the scenario seems plausible or not. Big deal! It’s your imagination!
The whole point of taking a different point of view and using your imagination is to get you to realize that maybe there are solutions to your problems that you hadn’t thought of yet. And since the way you are doing things right now is not solving the problem, you have to look at it differently.
Step four is realizing that all of your worrying is imaginary! Worrying about what might happen is as imaginary as putting yourself in someone else’s shoes. Really! Worrying is nothing more than imagining a horrible outcome to any given situation.
So whip up the forces of your imagination and dare to imagine a happy outcome. This takes a bit of practice but the payoff is huge. Instead of making it an unconscious habit to imagine the worst-case scenario, you’ll make a conscious habit to imagine the best-case scenario.
Imagination isn’t just for kids. Kids don’t worry. That’s a silly adult trait. Okay, they don’t have responsibilities but you don’t have to always imagine the worst, right? The point is to use your imagination freely like a little kid in a positive way.
Use your imagination to spark your creativity and resourcefulness by planting the seed of a possible happy outcome instead of planting the seed of a negative outcome. The more you visualize a happy outcome, the more you prime your mind to hunt for ways to make that scenario reality.
Anxiety is no fun at all, and it actually prevents you from taking action. It’s easy to be paralyzed by fear. So while you’re meditating, focus on what you WANT to see in your life. Imagine yourself taking the necessary action to make it happen. That will give you the confidence to go out there and do it. Athletes do this all the time – they visualize themselves winning races and standing on the podium. They never visualize what might go wrong! This positive thinking sets the wheels in motion for success. You can do this too.
4 Step Meditation for Anxiety:
- Find time to meditate every day using a meditation music download such as Omharmonics. 15-30 minutes of “me time” is indispensable.
- See what your mind is obsessing about and change those thoughts: focus on what you want.
- See the situation with fresh eyes, from a new perspective (use your imagination!)
- Visualize a desired outcome (use your imagination some more!)
Meditation techniques for anxiety aim to relax you so your body can release pent-up stress that only contributes to your anxiety. And, when the stress is released, you can think clearly and come up with remarkable solutions to your problems… so you can say goodbye to anxiety forever!
If you want to become more compassionate and productive, Emily Fletcher's Masterclass on Meditation for Super Performance is absolutely FREE and plays on Mindvalley Academy.