There are no shortcuts and easy answers to help you free your mind. If there were, we’d all be walking around like we just attended a meditation retreat for two months. That said, there are surefire ways to get that mind freedom ball rolling. The list below has but a few examples to ensure you get on the right path. It’s up to you to do the work.
Step Number 1: Therapy.
Yeah, you know this is my MAIN go-to. What therapists and psychologists and psychiatrists have been trained to do is (very effectively) help us free our minds. They’re the brain experts.
Listen, if you’re seeing an expert to learn business marketing or to fix your tooth, why would you not go to an expert to help you free your mind?
One of the reasons why we are often preoccupied by something in the past is because we have spent so much time ping-ponging that thought in our brain. We never fully process what it means and, therefore, don’t have the tools to put it in proper context for where we are today.
Our brains are really good at protecting us from pain.
The most successful, smart, self-aware, vulnerable, cool, easy to be around, and comfortable in their own skin kind of people I know do therapy.
Step Number 2: Forgive.
Just by forgiving another person or maybe yourself, you can help to release that negative thought, those emotions, that preoccupation. You know, holding on to a grudge is only hurting you. It’s giving power to that person who hurt you. And they don’t deserve that, do they?
Forgiveness is one of the most powerful things you can give others and, not to mention, yourself.
Step Number 3: Exercise.
Not a surprise, right? I triple dare you to be mad about something, then go on a 30-minute run… and come back as angered or as triggered or as upset as you were before that run. You won’t be. It’s impossible.
Exercising focuses the body on a physical requirement. In other words, it takes your attention off of whatever’s going on in your mind, forcing you to do something physical. Exercise, as we know, releases endorphins and lowers cortisol and it almost always brings about a happier mood!
Step Number 4: Mindfulness.
The only way to really do that is to get yourself to a place where you’re not thinking about what you’re going to do tomorrow or what you’re going to do when you finish reading this blog or about things that happened yesterday or a month ago or a year ago.
This will also eliminate worry. A huge factor in freeing your mind.
I think mindfulness is something that you work on, but as you get better at it you soon start to realize you don’t have to try as hard.
Step Number 5: Remove Distractions.
You might just have too much happening around you! You’ve got a television going on in the background and your cell phone is on your lap and there’s music playing in the other room and there are people talking to you at the same time (and not the ones on TV)! It’s time to pay attention to this and focus on one thing only.
Our brains haven’t evolved with technology, so multitasking or multiprocessing isn’t even a real thing.
Step Number 6: Decide.
To make a decision means to literally cut off. You can free your mind by finally making that decision, the one you know you need to make.
Relationships that are toxic and not helping you. That job you’ll never get a promotion at. Your eating habits that were supposed to change 8 New Year’s resolutions ago. Where you live is far from everyone you love.
Once you’ve made this decision to truly change whatever lack you are experiencing in whatever area of your life… you have to commit to it.
Step Number 7: Meditation.
Gotta be honest, I’m not quite there yet. At least not on a daily basis. But when I do meditate and really get quiet and centered, there’s nothing better at calming my mind. Look, there’s a reason why it’s called a meditation practice. It takes time. I suggest to add 1 minute increments to each new meditation and starting off with some guided ones. Perhaps start with a walking meditation or listen to calming music, quotes or an app. There’s no “perfect” way to meditate so just start! Any practice is better than no practice!