Mindfulness in town and country

Saturday November 2, 2019

I don't know if I've got this right, but mindfulness seems to be about not relying on my mind to work my way out of every anxiety. My mind sometimes works very fast indeed. When my anxiety is up, I can think of reasons for, and reasons against, almost anything I do. Should I do this first? Or that?

Mornings are generally (but not always) worse for my mind racing. I can calm it by taking a short walk before going to work. Observing horses. Hedgerows. Looking to see if I can see the swallows. Admiring the shapes of the trees. Hearing. What can I hear? A snuffle behind the hedge. A distant train. Birdsong. More rustling. Do the horses have a relationship? What can I smell? By this time, my mind has dis-engaged. My other senses are engaged. The problems aren't solved, but the respite is welcome.

In town, I do some alternative mindfulness. Bizarrely, I like buildings. I observe them. I look at the sequence of shapes. The proportions. I count windows or pillars for symmetry. I suddenly notice a decorated stone strip I never saw before. Was it essential? Why did I never notice it before? Are those lines really parallel? Again, I am losing myself in my surroundings. My mind is no longer worrying over problems like a dog worrying over a bone. It is observing, marvelling. The problems aren't solved, but the respite is welcome. Sometimes the respite is all I need. It certainly doesn't do any harm!

A Moodscope member.

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