Mental health feelings

Help! Can everyone be mindful?

I really don’t believe I can be mindful, not in the way that it is being presented to me.

During my DBT course (dialectical behavioural therapy) I am constantly assaulted with the idea of mindfulness.

Mindfulness is defined as: 

An awareness of thoughts, feelings, behaviours, and behavioural urges. By learning mindfulness, we are empowered to be in charge of ourselves in a different way. It has been proven that awareness assists in emotional regulation. As we understand ourselves, we accept ourselves and change ourselves. It is a practice of attention and intention.

I have tried practicing many, many types mindfulness at many different times of day, starting out in different frames of mind each time.

I. Just. Can’t. Do. It.

Everyone tells me, it’s a skill I need to practice, no one gets it overnight, you need to work at it.

I have so many problems with this, I don’t know how to list them all, here are my two main issues:

  • Can I be mindful of the present moment, without being 100% present?

I find it incredibly difficult to focus my mind on just one thing for any amount of time, my mind is a busy, cluttered mess that never stops. I can’t focus on my favourite thing in the world for more than a few minutes without distraction. However I am aware of my thoughts, feelings, emotions, body sensations etc without thinking only about them.

I have been told numerous times that’s not mindfulness but maybe it could be in my very own unconventional way?

 

  • If mindfulness is supposed to be relaxing, why does it make me feel so horrible?

 

On the surface, it’s incredibly boring, a little further down and it’s frustrating, pushing further it’s stressful, depressing, anxiety provoking; all of that is masking the real emotion or lack of it.

If I’m not thinking, feeling, acting, doing… What am I? A vast empty space of nothingness.

mindfulness

 

 

Am I missing something?

Is there some key ingredient I’m just not getting?

Am I not trying hard enough?

Am I, as I am starting suspect just a failure?

Or is there some legitimacy to the claim, that not everyone is suited to mindfulness?

Are there other people like me who need more mental stimulation than mindfulness can provide?

 

Whatever the answer is, I have it on good authority that I probably won’t be able to continue with the course if I can’t get over this hurdle, so what do I do? 

Can anyone help me? 

 

Photo by Dawid Zawiła on Unsplash

7 thoughts on “Help! Can everyone be mindful?

  1. Why, yes. I am a certified instructor in absolutely nothing. I think you need to keep at it, but not with the “I hate this” mindset. 😀
    I’d also start small and consistently: 12:00 p.m. always being Mindfulness Time. Do something that does relax you, with a little of the stuff you dread. Add even more.
    And, tell your paid person about your concerns. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Paid person has been informed and is helping me search for the answer. The problem is I find being busy relaxing and emptiness depressing.
      Great advice though, perhaps trying in the evening when there is less I HAVE to do will help. 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  2. When I was very ill, learning mindfulness and meditation played a big part in getting me better, but like you, I hated it! I’d say it’s not enough to simply focus on what’s going on around you, your brain needs the silence. And when I say ‘your brain’ I don’t mean the conscious, thinking part of your brain, but all the mechanics happening that you aren’t aware of. It sounds like the problem is your fear of the nothingness, and may be that is something you need to face and understand. If you can use the mental silence to pay attention your feelings during mindfulness, see what your emotions are and try to sense their origin, that might help.

    That said, I do think some people genuinely don’t react well to mindfulness, the question is:Is that a barrier you need to break through that would ultimately benefit you? Or is it better to leave it? It would take a professional to figure that one out, I think.

    I’m not sure I’ve been that helpful, I hope it works out for you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You’ve been very helpful! The problem I have is with BPD and chronic feelings of emptiness being one of my major triggers. I have a long history of dissaciosiating and using harmful coping strategies to bring ‘me’ back.
      So far, the silencing of my brain buzz in leading me down that path rather than a more connected, enlightened one.
      Professionals were still trying to get me to breakthrough this but I have told them, I just don’t think I am a person who can ever be truly mindful.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I think there’s a tendency in psychiatric medicine to assume that if one thing is effective for some people, then it must be enforced on everyone. It’s good that you know yourself well enough to say ‘No! It’s not for me.’
        Maybe one day that will change, but forcing your brain to do something that feels harmful is unlikely to help. A good therapist should be able to find an alternate route. Good luck with it and take care of yourself.

        Liked by 1 person

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