Practising mindfulness is a process. It’s not about trying to get something, but about living and being, allowing the practice to unfold just as life does. There is no end point but that doesn’t mean we don’t make progress. Every so often, something happens that makes me realise just how far I have travelled. It’s a moment to acknowledge, to explore and to celebrate.Read More
Have you ever been struck by how differently two people can view the same thing? How about considering how one person can see two very different points of view? It is so easy to get stuck in a particular mindset thinking there is only one way, but with an increase in psychological flexibility it’s possible to take a step back and consider alternative views. You might just discover all sorts of possibilities if you do.
I was feeling anxious about something recently; future hospital treatment, so it was understandable that I might feel apprehensive. I felt stuck. I’d lost control and jumped into the unknown. At least that’s what my thoughts were telling me. Prompted by the words of a wise doctor, I was reminded how those thoughts weren’t necessarily true. What might the alternative be? Could I flip it? Could I take charge and therefore feel in control? Could I express my wishes and assert my needs, making it less of an unknown? Yes, I could. The result was immediate and empowering. It felt like an entirely different situation. I was no longer stuck.
Our thoughts have a direct impact on our feelings, so it’s no surprise that a shift in perspective can bring a shift in feelings and an increased sense of well-being. The challenge is to see the alternative. We become so familiar with a particular point of view that our brains literally get used to activating certain neural pathways. The good news is that just like physical flexibility, psychological flexibility (being able to adapt to different situations and view alternative perspectives) can be increased. Learning something new, doing something differently and getting out of your comfort zone all help. You can read more about that here. It really is worth the effort.