The Mindfulness Journal for Anxiety is on its way, and it’s coming to help you quiet anxiety and develop your own personal version of stillness and inner peace. When it comes to mental health and wellbeing, journaling simply works. The Positive Psychology Program, an organization dedicated to improving wellbeing and mental health through the application of positive psychology, provides 83 sound reasons why journaling is an excellent healer of depression, anxiety, stress, trauma, and more. I’ve reaped the benefits of journaling, and I’m excited to announce that I’ve written The Mindfulness Journal for Anxiety that, in combination with mindfulness exercises, guides you gently on a rewarding journey to stillness and self-recovery.
Welcome to the Wellbeing & Words 30-Day Mindfulness Experience! Mindfulness is a way of being that you can cultivate by regularly doing mindfulness activities. Mindfulness doesn’t remove problems, but it changes our relationship with those problems–and with ourselves. Mindfulness is a wonderful experience that gives us the power to take back our lives and help us live well despite anxiety, depression, stress, and a multitude of other physical- and mental health challenges. Mindfulness allows you to free yourself from these problems by rooting yourself in what’s going on in your real world rather than in your racing, spinning mind.
Meaning-making is a powerful tool to enhance mental health and wellbeing. While useful year-round, turning inward and creating personal meaning in your life is especially effective in late autumn. Intentionally caring for our mental health in November allows us to enjoy the month and the changes it brings. Doing so can prepare us for the holiday season that begins this month, and it can even stave off seasonal depression (seasonal affective disorder, SAD). Among the many things that can boost wellbeing is taking time to reflect and engage in personal meaning-making.
Is mindfulness magic? It has powers. Does it also have limits?
Mindfulness has become my way of life. Thanks to the practice, I am living, fully and completely, in the present moment. Living mindfully helps me quiet mental chatter and focus on what is happening in the world I can take in with my senses. I’ve come to expect great things from mindfulness, but I’ve never believed that it was magic or esoteric or supernatural or something originating in Area 51. But then, mindfulness dismissed from jury duty.
While I’m not one to tell people what to do, I will say this anyway: You need to celebrate stuff every day. Intentionally seeking things to celebrate on a daily basis increases your sense of wellbeing and your life satisfaction. Finding or creating things to celebrate, even if they are minuscule, is a way of making a good life lived in moments (as opposed to chaotic chunks). Identify the good and taking a moment (or multiple moments) to celebrate it shifts your perspective in a positive direction and infuses your life with a sense of meaning.
Wellbeing and mindfulness aren’t just for retreats, spas, and other calm environments. Quite the opposite is true, in fact. While placing yourself in a soothing environment, like sitting in a favorite room in the morning while enjoying a cup of tea, is important for calming mind and body, the power of mindfulness can be fully experienced in the midst of chaos.
Among the many types of freedom, mental freedom is perhaps the most important of all. Every year in early July, the United States celebrates Independence Day. Many nations joyfully observe their own independence at various times throughout the year. Regardless of where one lives, an independence day is a day that celebrates freedom from unwanted control. The significance of this day goes far deeper than the political realm and touches each and every one of us on a personal level of being and impacts our mental freedom and wellbeing. .
To live well and embrace a life of wellbeing, we need to experience mental freedom. When we feel as though we are under the control of anxiety, depression, trauma, eating disorders, brain injury, toxic relationships, or so much more, we often feel caged. Our mental health and happiness suffer. Just as entire nations have broken free from unwanted control, so can we as individuals who want to live quality lives.
Today is Memorial Day.
For many, it marks the beginning of summer. Some schools have already dismissed, the academic year officially over. It’s the unofficial first camping weekend of the season. It’s a day of picnics and barbeques, of gardening—planting and nurturing vegetables and fruits that will nourish us in the moment and through the next seasons as well as planting beautiful flowers to appreciate and enjoy mindfully.
Memorial Day weekend—the weekend, not the “Day”—is this, yes. The dedicated day, however, is beyond this. Today is a day that we remember, honor, and appreciate soldiers who sacrificed their lives standing for the freedom they valued for everyone. It began in 1865 at the end of the Civil War and continues today as an honor those who have continued to preserve our way of life for 153 years and counting.
Mindfulness enhances wellbeing. It equips us to deal with what we don’t want, such as problems we don’t have much control over. It also allows us to drastically reduce things that are disrupting our lives, such as anxiety. Pictures reach us and teach us through our visual sense. A photo gallery can bring mindfulness to us aesthetically and show us useful tips for a mindful lifestyle. One that is a collective resource where we all share tips that work for us is a way for everyone to grow. So let’s do it!
For me, mindfulness is something that has helped, and continues to help, me create a quality life, and I’ve worked with wonderful people and have seen mindfulness let them improve their lives. Mindfulness proved to be a calming and empowering tool for students in a school for homeless and runaway adolescents where I worked as the teacher and counselor. It even helped a four-year-old boy in foster care when I was his play therapist.
Earth day is a wonderful day because it’s about health. As a global society, we intentionally recognize the Earth and the good things it does for all life. This day is a reminder that we’re all in this together, that this planet is for all of us. Together, we all benefit from its health. Together, we all suffer from its illness. Taking this day to connect with the Earth and to thank it for all it does for us is a powerful, positive thing to do. Something incredibly important to remember on Earth Day and every day is how deeply connected to, even dependent upon our planet we are for our mental health and wellbeing.
Below you’ll find some of the myriad ways you can connect with nature every day to boost your wellbeing and life satisfaction. Which ones do you already do? What do you want to add anew or do more of?