Readers, have any of you ever felt overwhelmed? It could be from work or school, from different types of relationships, from life challenges, from moving to a new city, or even from your own expectations of yourself. Well, I can sympathize. This entire year I have felt equally overwhelmed. I moved to a new city where I did not know many people, I was applying for medical school, I started a new and very demanding job, it seemed like each member of my immediate family was coping with their own set of challenges, this was the first time I was living by myself and this was also the longest I had ever gone without seeing my twin sister. FRANKLY, I was just a mess.
But in the midst of the jumble that was my life, I received a piece of advice from one of my yoga teachers that helped me to navigate through my anxiety. She told me TO DO NOTHING. That’s right: she told me to sit down in a comfortable place, put my feet up, remove all other distractions and simply do nothing for as long as I was able to.
I will admit that I initially dismissed her advice. How could I not when all other advice throughout my life pointed me towards always pushing myself outside of my comfort zone? How could I not when I opened social media in the morning and all of my friends seemed to have their lives together? But, I finally felt completely out of options and decided to give her method a try. I grabbed a blanket and, technology less, plopped down on my couch to enjoy 10 minutes of doing nothing.
I have now been doing this every single day for the past 3 months. My anxiety levels have gone down and, most importantly, I feel more equipped to live in the moment as opposed to constantly worrying about the future. Whether you are coping with the stress of going out into the world as a college graduate and facing an unknown future or coping with the demands of family life and all the associated challenges that seem to pop up at the worst time, I highly encourage you to try this technique.
This may not work for everybody in the same way as it has for me, but why not try? At the very least, I challenge you to give yourself at least 10 minutes in your day to spend on your own mental health.
In other words, Readers, your homework is TO DO NOTHING.