Kill The Worry Habit Now – Part 2

In the previous part of this article you have seen the physical make-up and workings of the outer mind and how it can take over your entire life like a tyrant. Understanding is the beginning of freedom.

A Practical Exercise

Now, try this ancient exercise. It is simple, easy and powerful. In fact, a variation of it has also been adopted by the armed forces of some countries to help their soldiers relax and cope with the highly stressful after effects of warfare and a typical day of intense battle training.

It is a simple breathing exercise that helps to refocus the outer mind. It effectively stops the outer mind from going into an endless playback mode, churning out the unhappy images that keep you in a constant state of heightened negative emotions.

1. To start with, sit comfortably upright, either cross-legged on the floor (use a slightly cushioned sitting mat) or in a chair but, with feet gently planted squarely on the floor.
2. Take 3 deep, long and full breaths, in and out easily, filling up the lungs and feeling as if the breaths are reaching the lowest point of the abdomen and emptying out to the lowest point, as well.
3. Then, take note of the relaxation that has begun. Notice how the tension has drained away from just doing something else.
4. Now, let your consciousness settle on being aware of your breath. Breathe in slowly, pacing your in-breath to the count of 10. Concentrate on the sensation of coolness at the entrance of the nostrils, as the air rushes in.
5. Hold the in-breath briefly for a split second. Let the decision be yours to release it; not an automatic reaction.
6. Then, breathe out slowly, pacing your out-breath to the count of 10. Concentrate on the sensation of warmness at the entrance of the nostrils, as the breath rushes out.
7. Hold the out-breath briefly, for a split second. Again, let the decision be consciously yours to breathe in.
8. Let each in-and-out breath action be counted as one unit.

A session of 3 to 6 counts should cover a period of around 6-10 minutes.

You will notice that the concerns that plague you, as you start are dropped almost immediately. You feel a deep sense of relaxation and release.

Use this technique to lead into your meditation or contemplation sessions. It will effectively get your mind off the things you do not want and allow you to focus on that which you would like to cultivate, when you choose to meditate.

But, more importantly, it carries many physical benefits, too. It helps to effectively and immediately curtail the continued release of cortisol into the blood.

Under stress, your adrenal glands start to work overtime. One of their reactions is to then pump too much cortisol into the bloodstream which, over an extended period of time can result in a greater risk of a host of psychiatric problems, including depression, anxiety or worse. High cortisol levels can lead to increase in insulin resistance, a precursor to diabetes. Cortisol can also strongly influence what you eat and your urge to eat while under stress.

Stress-busting principles in the Bible

Again, the Bible proves to be a good source of instruction in helping us simply and effectively to reduce our dependence on the outer mind for running our lives. We need to look for and understand the abstract concepts that can help us in our present day circumstances.

We work hard physically, but still do not achieve. The end result is that nagging feeling of inefficiency and under-achievement that results in unhappiness and constant stress.

One example that I have come across is the concept of trust in the subtle, yet dynamic power of the higher intelligence of mind in helping us create the state of success and well-being that cannot be influenced by physical action or mere striving after.

“He answered their prayers because they trusted in him.” – 1 Chronicles 5:20.

What I understand here is that trust is an essential requirement in any relationship.

To take this thought further: we need to establish a relationship with the higher plane of mind that is ours to access. And then, we need to learn to trust that it exists and that it is powerful. We need to trust that the higher plane of mind can indeed influence and destroy the shadows that frighten us in the “reality” that we mistakenly perceive our physical lives to be.

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