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  #16  
Old 10-01-18, 04:21 PM
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Re: How do you live in the moment?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Greyhound1 View Post
Thanks Daniel,
I’ve been working on mindfulness for about the past 3 years. It can really help keep anxiety from manifesting when it works well. When I mentioned making a conscious effort to be in the moment, I really meant and should of said practicing mindfulness. It doesn’t seem to be nearly as effective for me staying in the now or the moment.

Thanks for the tips!
Yes, mindfulness is supposed to be really good for people with ADHD. It helps with focusing on the present moment, and paying attention to what is going on in that moment, noticing.

Your problems with "staying in the moment" could have something to do with forcing the issue too much, or castigating yourself when your mind wanders. A common misconception with mindfulness, as with meditation, is that you're doing it wrong if you lose the mindfulness and get caught in a train of thought. In fact, that's quite normal, and the whole practice of mindfulness is then gently bringing your attention back to one of your sensors, 150 times if necessary.

Some tips:
1. All mindfulness is, really, is noticing one of six sensors: seeing, hearing, feeling or body sensations, taste, smell, or thoughts and emotions. You are just "remembering that seeing is happening in the present moment." Where someone who is not mindful might be registering visual images but really ruminating about something else, you are simply noting to yourself "seeing is happening" or "hearing is happening". And simply see or hear whatever is there.
2. You don't have to slow down what you are doing. In fact, the more natural your activity is, the more likely mindfulness is to work.
3. You don't have to force or strain. Just note "hearing is happening", for example, don't then strain to identify every last sound.
4. Just notice different sensors. Sights, sounds, your breathing (breathe naturally!), whatever you're feeling, and so on. That's really all there is to it. There's not special "mindful way" to notice these senses. Just notice they are happening.
5. When your mind wanders, as it most definitely will, just notice when it is happening, whenever you catch yourself, and gently focus again on one of your sensors. DO NOT judge or castigate yourself. If you do, you can softly think to yourself "judging, judging" or "criticizing, criticizing" and then leave it at that. And DO NOT say these words in a harsh tone either! That actually feeds self-criticism. Just note softly and matter-of-factly that you judged yourself, and then move on to noticing one of your senses.
6. You can only notice one sensor at a time in a mindful way. So don't get angry with yourself if you can only notice you are seeing, or notice you are hearing, one at a time.
7. Again, you can do this anytime, whatever you are doing. Enjoy it! Enjoy how beautiful the flowers are, or how good the soap smells in the shower, or how pretty the chirping birds are, or even the soothing hum of the AC or murmur of voices.
8. Don't judge or analyze or tell stories about what you are noticing, including people, voices, your emotions, whatever. That's key. Just remembering "seeing is happening" is enough.
9. If you get tired, stop and go back to "normal thinking". It's perfectly ok not to be mindful.
10. Again, do not "move mindfully". Don't slow down what you are doing. DO notice if you are rushing or toppling forwards into the next moment. For example, say you are walking somewhere, or are in a car. Just notice that you are thinking about the destination, and remind yourself "present moment". Remember, even if you are in a car, THIS IS A MOMENT OF YOUR LIFE TOO! It's not just a means to get to work, or home, or whatever. Even sitting in your car, at a stop light, that's a moment of your life too. Look backwards, feel your body weight in the seat, gently note the other drivers or pedestrians (without intruding on their space), whatever you feel like doing. If you are in a car, however, remember the #1 goal is to arrive safely.

Hope that all helps. There are other tips, for sure, but I thought a nice round list of 10 would help whatever folks are reading this thread and interested in trying mindfulness get started. It definitely helps with ADHD and rumination.

The key is, if your mind wanders, YOU ARE NOT DOING IT WRONG. Just begin again. And again.

And always, with meditation or mindfulness, be gentle with yourself. Do not yank your attention back or strain in any way, or criticize or judge yourself or your abilities to do this. Especially if you are a Type-A person like me!

D.
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Be yourself, and the rest will follow.

Breathing is not optional. - Dr. Raymond Wertheim

What do you care what other people think? - Arline Feynman, to her husband, American physicist Richard P. Feynman

D.

Last edited by DanielGM1970; 10-01-18 at 04:36 PM.. Reason: typos and clarification
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  #17  
Old 10-01-18, 05:08 PM
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Re: How do you live in the moment?

Oh, and one thing I've learned about mindfulness (and meditation). Don't just notice things in the awesome times of life. If you are bored washing dishes, notice how warm the water feels flowing over your hands. Notice how good the clothes smell when you're taking the laundry out of the dryer.

If you are irritated about having to make peanut-butter sandwiches for your kid for the millionth time, notice that and be curious about that feeling. What does it look like? Feel like? Any images come to mind?

I'd be interested in hearing from anyone else trying mindfulness to help with anxiety, stress, or ADHD.
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Breathing is not optional. - Dr. Raymond Wertheim

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  #18  
Old 10-01-18, 05:11 PM
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Re: How do you live in the moment?

Great post. I think that's one of the most helpful explanations of mindfulness that I've ever read!!


Quote:
Originally Posted by DanielGM1970 View Post
Yes, mindfulness is supposed to be really good for people with ADHD. It helps with focusing on the present moment, and paying attention to what is going on in that moment, noticing.

Your problems with "staying in the moment" could have something to do with forcing the issue too much, or castigating yourself when your mind wanders. A common misconception with mindfulness, as with meditation, is that you're doing it wrong if you lose the mindfulness and get caught in a train of thought. In fact, that's quite normal, and the whole practice of mindfulness is then gently bringing your attention back to one of your sensors, 150 times if necessary.

Some tips:
1. All mindfulness is, really, is noticing one of six sensors: seeing, hearing, feeling or body sensations, taste, smell, or thoughts and emotions. You are just "remembering that seeing is happening in the present moment." Where someone who is not mindful might be registering visual images but really ruminating about something else, you are simply noting to yourself "seeing is happening" or "hearing is happening". And simply see or hear whatever is there.
2. You don't have to slow down what you are doing. In fact, the more natural your activity is, the more likely mindfulness is to work.
3. You don't have to force or strain. Just note "hearing is happening", for example, don't then strain to identify every last sound.
4. Just notice different sensors. Sights, sounds, your breathing (breathe naturally!), whatever you're feeling, and so on. That's really all there is to it. There's not special "mindful way" to notice these senses. Just notice they are happening.
5. When your mind wanders, as it most definitely will, just notice when it is happening, whenever you catch yourself, and gently focus again on one of your sensors. DO NOT judge or castigate yourself. If you do, you can softly think to yourself "judging, judging" or "criticizing, criticizing" and then leave it at that. And DO NOT say these words in a harsh tone either! That actually feeds self-criticism. Just note softly and matter-of-factly that you judged yourself, and then move on to noticing one of your senses.
6. You can only notice one sensor at a time in a mindful way. So don't get angry with yourself if you can only notice you are seeing, or notice you are hearing, one at a time.
7. Again, you can do this anytime, whatever you are doing. Enjoy it! Enjoy how beautiful the flowers are, or how good the soap smells in the shower, or how pretty the chirping birds are, or even the soothing hum of the AC or murmur of voices.
8. Don't judge or analyze or tell stories about what you are noticing, including people, voices, your emotions, whatever. That's key. Just remembering "seeing is happening" is enough.
9. If you get tired, stop and go back to "normal thinking". It's perfectly ok not to be mindful.
10. Again, do not "move mindfully". Don't slow down what you are doing. DO notice if you are rushing or toppling forwards into the next moment. For example, say you are walking somewhere, or are in a car. Just notice that you are thinking about the destination, and remind yourself "present moment". Remember, even if you are in a car, THIS IS A MOMENT OF YOUR LIFE TOO! It's not just a means to get to work, or home, or whatever. Even sitting in your car, at a stop light, that's a moment of your life too. Look backwards, feel your body weight in the seat, gently note the other drivers or pedestrians (without intruding on their space), whatever you feel like doing. If you are in a car, however, remember the #1 goal is to arrive safely.

Hope that all helps. There are other tips, for sure, but I thought a nice round list of 10 would help whatever folks are reading this thread and interested in trying mindfulness get started. It definitely helps with ADHD and rumination.

The key is, if your mind wanders, YOU ARE NOT DOING IT WRONG. Just begin again. And again.

And always, with meditation or mindfulness, be gentle with yourself. Do not yank your attention back or strain in any way, or criticize or judge yourself or your abilities to do this. Especially if you are a Type-A person like me!

D.
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  #19  
Old 10-01-18, 08:26 PM
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Re: How do you live in the moment?

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Originally Posted by Fuzzy12 View Post
Great post. I think that's one of the most helpful explanations of mindfulness that I've ever read!!
Same here. Thanks Daniel!
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  #20  
Old 10-02-18, 01:38 PM
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Re: How do you live in the moment?

Thanks guys!
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  #21  
Old 10-02-18, 01:47 PM
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Re: How do you live in the moment?

By the way, it's usually helpful to start a mindfulness session by noticing something real obvious, like your body, or the swinging of your arms while you're walking, or your breathing. If paying attention to your breathing makes you anxious, just notice your body instead. Then move on to the other sensors.

If you feel any negative emotions, don't push them away - that usually just makes them stronger. Instead, get curious about them. One way to get at peace with a negative emotion is, rather than saying "I can deal with this just as long as it goes away sometime", ask "is it OK if this feeling accompanies me for the rest of my life?" Usually realizing that you can coexist with the feeling and survive actually releases it's hold on you. If the answer is "no", then that's where I would get help from a therapist and perhaps medications to untangle whatever it is. Mindfulness is not a panacea for everything, it's just another helpful tool in your toolbox for getting healthier mentally, physically, and emotionally.

Speaking of which, I need to sit down and meditate today!

All the best,
Daniel
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Be yourself, and the rest will follow.

Breathing is not optional. - Dr. Raymond Wertheim

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  #22  
Old 10-09-18, 11:57 AM
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Re: How do you live in the moment?

There was a time, before I knew adult ADD was real, when everything was totally spinning out of control. I Didn't understand why I was like. Going 50 plus years with undiagnosed ADD almost blew my brain to smithereens. Not being being able to function like the normal population was always in my head. It was a vicious cycle.

I pulled myself out of my funk by embracing it and accepting myself as I am. of course I still have my funk days. I think every ADDer has them. When the funk starts coming I get through by by doing things to distract me. Hallowell talks about it in his book "Delivered From Distraction' He says also that we all have our dark days. I often go back to his book cause he hits the nail on the nail on the head. Read Chapter 35. Living Through the Pain of ADD.
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  #23  
Old 10-10-18, 04:36 PM
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Re: How do you live in the moment?

Well my first question is do you want to be there, in the present tense, or does judgment city have a special place in your heart? I discovered after many decades of not being in the present tense, sometimes numbed out, sometimes distracted, sometimes busy, that it really takes (took) me a lot of work and energy to get there, and even now often still seems unnatural. Like not home. Not too good at mindful meditation, though I like the idea of it. The intention doesn't match with the execution, or I suddenly just get a narcolepsy like state. Still I have learned to pencil in slots of time where I am doing less, when the phone is off and I am not covertly hurrying to the next thing, even that could be anything or nothing. Or to sit somewhere. It helps when the weather is wrm and I can do this outside. Or do some small thing and just do some small thing, like washing the dishes. Sometimes it works in motion, on a train or plane. There I am a traveller in the present tense.

Still I seem to suffer more from difficulties in planning things outside the present tense. I suspect because I have spent my whole life getting there, to the present tense, that I live somewhat like a child, and almost everything that so many people do that leads to accumulation and progress, seems at a minimum foreign if not irrelevant.

I don't have a dog, but a cat. He too lives mostly from moment to moment. It works for him, but he is entirely exempt from things like housing and retirement.
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  #24  
Old 10-11-18, 09:30 AM
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Re: How do you live in the moment?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Goofycook View Post
There was a time, before I knew adult ADD was real, when everything was totally spinning out of control. I Didn't understand why I was like. Going 50 plus years with undiagnosed ADD almost blew my brain to smithereens. Not being being able to function like the normal population was always in my head. It was a vicious cycle.

I pulled myself out of my funk by embracing it and accepting myself as I am. of course I still have my funk days. I think every ADDer has them. When the funk starts coming I get through by by doing things to distract me. Hallowell talks about it in his book "Delivered From Distraction' He says also that we all have our dark days. I often go back to his book cause he hits the nail on the nail on the head. Read Chapter 35. Living Through the Pain of ADD.
I agree, Goofycook. It's really important not to beat yourself up for a bad day. I had a bad day yesterday. I have a bit of a back injury, and instead of moving around to keep the back loose, and doing my work and perhaps tidying up a bit (I was working from home), I just lay in bed all day, watched TV, surfed the internet, and got more and more anxious because I was feeling guilty and shameful for not doing my work and doing the things I needed to do to get healthier. Bad day. There's nothing I can do about it except make today a better one.
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  #25  
Old 10-11-18, 09:35 AM
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Re: How do you live in the moment?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1000koni View Post
Well my first question is do you want to be there, in the present tense, or does judgment city have a special place in your heart? I discovered after many decades of not being in the present tense, sometimes numbed out, sometimes distracted, sometimes busy, that it really takes (took) me a lot of work and energy to get there, and even now often still seems unnatural. Like not home. Not too good at mindful meditation, though I like the idea of it. The intention doesn't match with the execution, or I suddenly just get a narcolepsy like state. Still I have learned to pencil in slots of time where I am doing less, when the phone is off and I am not covertly hurrying to the next thing, even that could be anything or nothing. Or to sit somewhere. It helps when the weather is wrm and I can do this outside. Or do some small thing and just do some small thing, like washing the dishes. Sometimes it works in motion, on a train or plane. There I am a traveller in the present tense.

Still I seem to suffer more from difficulties in planning things outside the present tense. I suspect because I have spent my whole life getting there, to the present tense, that I live somewhat like a child, and almost everything that so many people do that leads to accumulation and progress, seems at a minimum foreign if not irrelevant.

I don't have a dog, but a cat. He too lives mostly from moment to moment. It works for him, but he is entirely exempt from things like housing and retirement.
That does sound tough. I think if you are having trouble with the actual execution of mindful meditation, as opposed to the idea of it, just remember that even if you lose yourself in trains of thought 150 times, and have to keep reminding yourself to come back to the present moment by noticing what one of your senses tells you, you are doing it right.

Try the app I mentioned. It is free (although there is additional content that you can pay for). I found that having someone in your earbuds telling you what to do, reminding you what sensor to pay attention to, and encouraging you that you are not doing it wrong, is a lot more helpful than toughing it out on your own.

Good luck. I know most of us on this forum are dealing with mental illness that the normal mindfulness initiate isn't, so I know it makes it a lot more challenging. But it feels good to do it, and eventually it starts to come more naturally.

D.
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Breathing is not optional. - Dr. Raymond Wertheim

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  #26  
Old 10-11-18, 12:33 PM
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Re: How do you live in the moment?

I am a glass half full person but I view it as very important not to sugar coat my adhd impairments. When I see positives about myself or other people with adhd I think they succeeded in spite of not because of their adhd. I know this is more of a Barkley theme and that the positives that make adhd'rs special tends to be a hallowell thing so its hard for me to like both of what they say.
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  #27  
Old 10-11-18, 04:35 PM
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Re: How do you live in the moment?

I did want to point out that I don't think people suffering from any sort of psychosis should try mindfulness at that time - I think it would be more distressing than helpful. In that case, I would get the medication levels to where they are helpful, and then it could be useful in securing your ties to the real world around you.

I would recommend it for depression and anxiety. Mindfulness especially helps you get away from the negative self-talk in your head and in contact with the world around you instead. It usually is helpful, although there have been times where I've been depressed and meditation or mindfulness practice just made me notice it more, so I stopped. In that case, something like Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), and untwisting the distorted thoughts in your brain, is a lot more helpful, as is medication in some cases.

Anyways, so that's my long disclaimer, lol.

D.
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Be yourself, and the rest will follow.

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