There is no shortage of problems that we all deal with. Not surprisingly, there’s no shortage of ways to cope with those problems, either.
What is the problem with many of these “coping” strategies?
A large majority (even ones perceived as healthy) only numb our difficulties. They aren’t aimed at solving them.
Certainly, overdoing a hobby is a better way of coping with life than substance abuse but neither gets to the root of the problem. Once the thrill or high wears off, the problem is still there staring you in the face.
Facing Problems Through Mindfulness
Mindfulness isn’t about ignoring or numbing a perplexing a problem. It’s more about sitting with it, trying to understand it and then solving it.
All too often, we don’t get to this point. The pain becomes too overwhelming and we just head to the fridge for a sugary snack, chase the bottom of another bottle or engage in risky behavior.
The problem is that doing so only adds to our suffering in the long run. Sure, we may feel good for a brief moment but our lives make less sense after our pain-numbing “binge”, not more.
Deep Breathing and Mindfulness
Deeping breathing can be a great help in facing problems that would be too painful to face otherwise.
In as little as eight minutes each day, you can practice deep breathing.
No, deep breathing won’t make your problems magically disappear. It will do something else, though.
By reducing your stress through deep breathing, you’ll feel better able to face what’s bothering you.
You’ll be able to sit down next to your difficulty like you’re sitting next to a “troubled person”. You’ll better understand what’s really going on and how to take steps towards a solution.
Some Quick Advice About the Breathing Process
While how everyone practices deep breathing will be a little different, there are some basic similarities in all who successfully practice it.
First, find a comfortable location and posture. Find somewhere quiet and get into a relaxed position. For most, this means sitting or lying down.
Next, start noticing your breaths. Taking longer-than-normal breaths can be helpful so long as this is relaxing to you. If you obsess too much over your breathing, it may become the opposite of relaxing!
Lastly, observe the rise and fall of your chest. Picture each part of your body slowly relaxing and letting the stress fall off.
You can either deal with stressful situations after this practice or can try to think through your problems while breathing. It really is about what works best for you.
You’ve spent years of pain-numbing. Why not face those problems, find a resolution and move on with a better life!