I had a new appointment with a cardiologist today, and I was very anxious as I waited to see him.
I suspect my anxiety is already affecting my heart rate or my perception of it, and the last thing I needed was for it to go higher. I’ve studied mindfulness and meditation a great deal, and I decided to use one of the techniques to help calm me down. The bonus is that no one knows you’re doing them.
I debated between deep breathing and using my senses.
I took a few breaths but then decided to use my senses because it was more enjoyable.
Try to use as many senses as possible in this exercise, one at a time. You can use them in any order and randomly pick several things to feel or sense. It’s often difficult to use all five, but at least three are good.
There wasn’t much available because I was in a stark examining room.
I chose just what I could see, although I could have also used the sense of touch.
I closed my eyes and started with a color. I chose red. Then I opened my eyes and looked for five red things.
The game became more challenging as I went through the range of colors.
Unless I chose white, there wasn’t much at all!
The important thing was that it distracted my anxious mind and calmed me down. This worked better than deep breathing would have. By the time the doctor came in, I was feeling much better.
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