Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Can You Escape?

The picture here is of my storage unit. It's exactly 6 miles away. I'm pretty fortunate that it's climate controlled and in a reasonably nice section of town. But, there's no electricity so the TVs don't work and I have to bring a battery-powered radio.

However, if you notice, I have a ton of books, some dumbbells, there's a couch on the right-hand side and a fold-up TV tray I can use as a desk. The light in the hallway is motion sensitive so it doesn't go off until long after I leave.

During this crazy time we all need somewhere to which we can escape. It might be your bathroom, bedroom, closet, garage, attic, car, a walk,...it doesn't matter. You just need somewhere you can get away from it all; at least for a little while. 

And, I don't necessarily mean the escaping you do online. More often than not you're going to see things (political, etc.) that crank you up.

I'm talking about just. getting. away.

Now, I hear ya. If you have small children or are caring for someone you have to be close. If that's the case you have to escape into your mind. 

But, be careful. One of my psychiatrist friends says, "When you're in your own mind you're behind enemy lines."

Try this: Find a picture of a place you would like to go. Outdoor scenes are best. You might want a picture without a lot of other people in it. 

Find a few minutes in which you can breathe deeply and really get into the picture. Imagine sun on your face and sand under your feet if it's a beach scene. Get into the cool air if you are in the mountains. 

If you can do this simple exercise for only 2 minutes (your mind will wander and you'll have to bring yourself back) you'll find yourself slowing down...getting a little calmer. It's a simple mindfulness exercise. And, Studies show that if you do it twice a day your blood pressure starts going down.

Not a bad trade-off for a couple of minutes.

This is a time in which lots of us are out here near the end of our ropes...as the saying goes, "Tie a knot in the rope and hang on!" 

My suggestion is tie that knot verrrry slowly and focus on it. 



You'll be glad you did.