MBSR (7)

I don’t know how much sense this is going to make since there’s so much flying around my head and I’m writing this just to get it down and give me some space. Funny, usually I’d give myself time to absorb things.

I didn’t write out the rest of week 4 – I had 3 or 4 posts on it. Or anything for week 5. And now we just finished week 6. I didn’t actually think I’d go on to the call today.

A couple days ago when I was trying to do a practice I found it very untethering so I stopped. I did a short practice the next morning but nothing more that day. Knowing how much of a mess my head has been the past week I knew that if I found it destabilising I just wouldn’t do it.

Mindfulness. So I’m really careful to call it mindfulness practice not meditation for mindfulness and meditation are 2 different things.

I’d still like to share last weeks overview. Either I will or I won’t. Today was week 6. Only 2 more weeks.

I told my friends to sign up. I’ve 2 good friends here. Both signed up. Depends on timings if they can do it. If they can I’d love to do it again with them.

I spoke today! Week 6 and the second time I spoke. This time right away I prefaced what I said with – please don’t ask anything on what I say. I did freak out afterwards, but nowhere near to the same extent as in week 4. Week 4 I spoke, and was freaking the rest of the time. Today I was able to calm myself down much faster. My heart rate was seriously amped up (courtesy of my smart watch I bought for running when I can’t run…. my heart rate is way higher than it used to be. I’m eating now. It’ll be interesting to see if it goes down. Also less dizzy so wondering if I’ll be able to take up running again).

Today the focus was on self compassion. I’m such a mixture. As I said in my last post (not an MBSR one) I’ve stopped saying I hate myself.

Something I’ve been doing a lot and have found really helpful is holding my hand to my neck. There’s definitely a term for it. If I ever google it (just after writing this?) I’ll write more.

The first discussion was on what you’d say to a friend having it rough, and what you’d say to yourself. I thought about my friend whose life is chaotic. All my friends lives are at the moment. It’s a bit draining. So yesterday I told M I’m here for her and love her. This is when I shared my thoughts. That I’d say that to someone else. That with myself there is the gap between where I am – self hatred and guilt, and where I want to be. That I write to myself (all the Letters to myself – a few are up here. Some day I’ll copy out some more) and I tell myself the same thing. That I’m here for myself no matter what. No matter what I do I’ll always love myself. And that I’m finding that sometimes in life or journaling I’m saying it to myself. Am more gentle with myself. I think I said less words than that. And I freaked. The next people sharing referenced what I said but I have no clue what I said because as soon as they said E, it was too much and I couldn’t focus. Just don’t talk about me!

We did a loving kindness practice next which really also was a bit much. The practice is 3 parts which is cool. First bring to mind someone you love and who you feel only good things towards. Could be a person or animal. Imagine yourself wishing them well. May you be at peace for example. A few wishes. Then put yourself with the person. May we be at peace. Then at bye to the person and may I be at peace.

I imagined NN. He is heaven and charming. That part was easy (I feel myself slowing down now which I’m grateful for). I imagined my wishes for his peace, joy and happiness to be blankets I was wrapping around him. I’m not visual but it worked. R, the person talking, suggested we imagine our wishes as pebbles in water rippling but wrapping blankets gives more protection. During every pause I added my own wishes.

Then we were told to add ourselves into it. That was much harder. I put NN on my lap and wrapped both of us in blankets of safety, love, compassion.

Then take away NN. Found that last part really hard. I first did it imagining me wrapping it around someone else who’s me but then wrapped it around myself sitting as I was there. By that time I put both my hands on my neck in almost a circle. When the practice finished I was shaking away. So when we had a break I did a 3 space grounding and did the hoop for a few minutes. To ground myself. That’s also why I’m writing this now. Though I’m not thinking about anything I’m saying. I’m slowing down.

WordPress is being glitchy and deleting my words a lot. I hope it’s not added back any it has deleted or deleted too much as then this really won’t make sense.

After the break he wanted us to write down what we would wish ourselves. I’d been doing that throughout the spaces in the practice as else I’d he everywhere but there. I know what I’d wish myself. Safety. Self love. Self compassion. Self acceptance. Connection. Peace. Serenity. Okayness. Notice I’m not saying a lack of self destruction for that will automatically change.

I didn’t engage much for I knew it was too much. Nor with the practice after because it was the third part of the self compassion and I was already shaky. Not going to do anything to make it worse (makes me laugh as I write this. How I live with such self destruction AND such self acceptance and compassion. I definitely accept my freaking about speaking. A few times I had what to say and didn’t. And this acceptance is natural because I didn’t expect myself to be unable to speak…

The last thing was asking us how we practice self care. I realised that I more practice self soothing then self care. I’ve plenty of distractions that wire me down – like writing this, but much less that are looking after myself how do I look after myself? Maybe through my gratitude journal – I’m up nearly 1500 (different gratitudes). Writing to myself – I use it more to access the part of me that loves myself more than to calm down. When I’m freaking out I tune out as soon as I engage with it so writing doesn’t work. Distraction does. I feel like my entire world at the moment is a distraction rather than prevention. Through journaling and practicing mindfulness every morning which is what I’m aiming to do.

Anyways. That was week 6. The practice this week is to do the 3 stage breathing space 3 times a day. If I’m keeping Judaism I can’t but on Monday to Wednesday I can. And the loving kindness practice once. Again I can on Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday.

I’d love to do the course again.

With Rosh Hashanah – the Jewish new year – tomorrow night, I’m not sure what the next few days will be. I haven’t been sleeping much. The days have been a mixture between up and down constantly. I’m glad to have the weekend now and no school for a few days.

I’ve written in the first or second post the biggest thing this course is giving to me. That is that I’m tuning in much more to where I am and grounding myself a lot more. It could be less self destruction has to do with that, I wouldn’t know. It’s also interesting to see that I still hate the body scan practice. I tried it nearly every day for 5 weeks. I like mindfulness of breath practices – find them grounding. Body and breath, or thought, I have found to be awesome or untethering depending on where my headspace was. I’ve been getting up earlier to do it for a few minutes. I want to get up earlier still to have time to journal and do half hour mindfulness practice if I want to after that. (Definitely better after journaling).

Signing off for real this time.

I’d love to hear how you’re all doing… if you don’t mind to drop a note and tell me…

Kesiva vechatima tovah – may your year be rolled with blessings and goodness.

Journaling 103 (9) TW

I’ve nothing to say.

I wrote 2 more pages in my gratitude journal. Aiming for 2700 for when I’m 27. I’m weird. This is one of the things I journalled about today. I see myself to getting to 2700 gratitudes. I don’t know if there’s a point buying new things or getting the tooth work I need done, done, because who said I’ll be here?

4 years ago, I promised to give life a go for 6 weeks. Do I think I can do that again now? Promise to try for 6 weeks? It doesn’t help to live if I don’t do anything to change it. I don’t want to do anything though. I don’t care if I die. I don’t care if I don’t exist. I just. Don’t. Care. I can’t care.

Though I want to be here for M, L, C and N. They’re celebrating their joy with me. I wouldn’t want them to hurt. Also for S times 3. I’m tired.

If I promise myself to try – again – then I’m going to have to actually do something to change it around. I don’t have the energy to do that. But it’s not a choice. It’s either one or the other. I don’t think it’s fair that I have to make this choice again. It’s kinda ironic that it’s suicide prevention week or something like that this week.

So how can I change it around?

I need help. And support. And I wrote a list of what I need to stop using when I wanted to and was ready to stop and just couldn’t coz didn’t have that. People to be there. Someone wrote it up for me in 5 (or 6) words.

  • Support
  • Check ins
  • Journalling
  • Therapy
  • Meditation (she meant mindfulness).

If I’m going to try for 6 weeks it means I’ll have to do them all. I am journalling but nowhere near enough. I can get up early each day.

I am doing mindfulness practice every day and for the next 4 weeks still have the MBSR course, and hoping to repeat the course when it finishes. The person who runs it said she thinks it would be possible. I can’t say I’m perfect for I’m not. But I’m trying to do some practice every morning because if I don’t in the morning I won’t later on.

Therapy – SG said she may be able to help. But she didn’t give details. GP put both referrals through (I wanted to hear back from the HBTT for that would give the support and the check ins. They say you can get someone to cone out to you 3 times a day. Asides from anything else. But that’s irrelevant). I don’t know that I wand therapy per se. I just want people to be there…. so I texted some random person – AP – someone gave me the name of to see if we could speak. Will see what she says, if it’s relevant. MaBe said she’s free end of September. I want to speak to her and see what I think of her. Therapy as in typical talk therapy is a waste of time. I don’t do talking. I process through journaling. Will see.

That’s what I need to stop using. I don’t want to stop using. If I’m going to commit to life for 6 weeks it means trying to put into place what I need to stop. Trying to make it possible to live and be okay.

ACA RSG meetings start this Thursday too. No idea if they will/won’t be helpful. Could be awesome. Could be a complete spiral sender.

People/support. I don’t know how to do that.

And the best is the complete contradiction. For come tomorrow morning I’m teaching at 9.30. And the lesson will be okay. I’ll be present and really there for my student. There is no way I wouldn’t be. Then I need to speak to the SENCo and help her make a plan for that student – more like give her my feedback and thoughts. She values what I have to say too much for my liking. And about another girl who isn’t my student who we need to decide ASAP if she wants me involved with her in school (in which case I won’t be at home. My friends daughter spoke to me and I’ve a lot of thoughts. And being that they think way too much of my thoughts they’ll probably try act on some).

I’d feel guilty to let them down. Yet I also can’t care. I do, though. I care so much about everyone.

So tomorrow is the 4 year anniversary of when I promised not to kill myself for 6 weeks. To someone who when the 6 weeks was over disappeared from my life. She is the reason I didn’t kill myself then. I’m not at all grateful to her for it would be so much easier if I weren’t here. I’m not suicidal. I just don’t mind dying.

And I’m kinda sad though I don’t feel sad, just nothing at all, that I’m here. As in back to this place. I haven’t felt this way in I don’t know how long. And if I ever did it was just fleeting.

Ending this here. Really, there is nothing to say.

MBSR (6) – overview of week 4

I’m going to try and do this as an overview, as really I have so much to say about every point.

There were only 6 participants this week (plus 2 training practitioners, and the mindfulness teacher who mostly stays silent).

Started with a 3 stage breathing space. We were meant to do that 3 times a day every day. I did it once during the week… We first looked at how we are wired to live with a negativity bias

Negativity bias scale - 3 positive stars on one side, a small negative on the other, the negative holding the scale down.
Image of character telling the brain to look at a pile of good things, the brain responding not now can't you see I'm busy - whilst looking with a magnifying glass at something negative.
Image showing that we live with a cycle of looking for and solving negative experiences whilst the positive just enters and exits the brain.

We then watched a neuroplasticity video

We split up into breakout rooms then to discuss home practice for 10 minutes. I was with 2 new guys, one whom I feel more comfortable with than the other. We spoke about what we did over the week, and anxiety, and how being aware either lessens it or makes it too much.

Back in the main room we shared what we discussed in the breakout rooms and when asked I said hi. We looked at unpleasant experiences and being that I was anyways freaking out after saying hi I stayed with it (I’ll write more about it). I decided to try use driving as a mindfulness activity. When I drive I get so frustrated behind other drivers or red lights – feeling trapped. Mindfulness (not listening to a practice!) may help. It will be interesting to see.

Next was looking at pleasant experiences. We can focus on pleasant experiences, and what they will do. Then did mindfulness walking – I did it for a couple minutes, then just curled up and listened as the others walked. No space in my toom and I couldn’t do it… so I didn’t.

We had a break. After that we did a mindfulness practice observing thoughts. I shared what I thought after and wasn’t understood but left it (that will be another post. I was so brave speaking!!). And ended off with a FOFBOC practice – grounding yourself by placing your Feet On the Floor, Body On the Chair and being aware of it, before reading this image/poem – autobiography in 5 short chapters. (I had a lot of thoughts on this).

I walk down the street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I fall in. I am lost. I am helpless.
It isn’t my fault.
It takes forever to find a way out.
II.
I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I still don’t see it. I fall in again.
I can’t believe I am in the same place.
It isn’t my fault.
It still takes a long time to get out.
III.
I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I see it there, I still fall in.
It’s habit. It’s my fault. I know where I am.
I get out immediately.
IV.
I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I walk around it.
V.
I walk down a different street.

This weeks homework is 3 stage breathing space 3 times a day, filling in pleasant experiences diary, mindful walking, mindful activity, and mindfulness practice every day. This morning I listened to some practices for an hour. When I go downstairs now I’ll try be mindful of my walking. I can’t do 10 minutes mindful walking since 10 minutes walking usually leaves me dizzy.

MBSR (5) Striving vs Accepting. Where both are true.

Striving. Aiming for somewhere. Accepting. Accepting yourself and where you’re at.

This has been playing around in my head today since they said a day ago that mindfulness means non striving. I began writing about it in my previous post about the class. If I could have actually said it then, I would’ve.

Mindfulness means being present. Accepting your reality. And that can include planning where you want to be and aiming for that place. The AND.

Being that this is an MBSR post, a current example for me during the last 3 MBSR zoom classes is: I accept my social anxiety. Who knew I had social anxiety? I didn’t! Well, I did to an extent. I accept that I find it really hard to share despite every other person in the group sharing. I thought I would share. AND I hope that one day I will share. (As I wrote I actually tried to and wasnt heard – yay me for trying). I would really like to share, just to be able to and I hope that during the next 5 weeks I will. Both striving and accepting. The AND and the BOTH. For both are true. I can strive. I can aim for somewhere. At the same time I can fully accept where I’m at.

I can look at my life at the moment as another example. If I didn’t aim anywhere I wouldn’t be doing this mindfulness course, and I’d probably be dead rather than writing this. Does that mean I don’t accept myself? Well, I don’t accept where I’m at but that’s besides the point. I’m trying to accept where I’m at. I’m trying to love myself no matter what destruction I’m living with. And I’m striving – to use the words in the course. I’m aiming for a life without destruction. They are both true.

I love this gals posts on the topic.

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MBSR zoom class 3

Mindfulness and grounding

Mindfulness- Primary and Secondary experiences

MBSR course Thoughts, 1

MBSR (4) – Todays zoom class 3/8

Mindfulness attitudes – Beginner’s Mind or Curiosity, Patience, Non-judging, Non-striving, Kindness and Compassion towards ourselves and others, Trust, Acceptance or Allowing, Letting Go 

Today was a mixture.

At the beginning we were told that one of the participants of the group wouldn’t be coming back. I found that jarring and we weren’t given time to process that. Yes I know most people don’t need time. I found it jarring because, because she had said last week that as soon as she was present she was sad. I could relate to that. It’s not what this course is giving to me. I’m not overwhelmed by emotions being mindful. Being mindful, for me, means what I said in my last post – grounded and present. So although what she shared isn’t my reality, it could be. I’m destroying myself. She wasn’t. I’ve been destroying myself long before this course and if anything being mindful will stop it – it won’t, it’s not about that for me – but yeah. I found it jarring. And sad. That was the first sentence.

We then started off with a mindfulness of body and breath which I actually focused on quite a bit. Then we went into breakout rooms to discuss the last weeks experience with practice. Last week the breakout room was 3 of us. This week was 4, which was too much for me. No space to be. Or speak. Afterwards everyone shared their thoughts with the group. I didn’t. I had what to say. My thoughts were/are pretty much all I’ve written. That I’ve been tuning into my body awareness in space and time a lot. Being very physically aware of myself. Tuning into breathing. And mainly just where exactly I am. That includes the sounds around me – which they for some reason have never yet brought up. Not always. Not at all always. But more. More and more. Even if it’s just twice a day that is awesome.

I’ve been less distracted during the body scans. Well, sometimes. I think that doing the practices no matter how distracted I am throughout is practicing focusing. And being aware. Being aware if how distracted I am is great, too. And once I tried doing the body and breath twice in a row. What I had found was that it took until the end until I finally focused a bit. So I relistened, and was a lot more focused the second time around.

That took until ten past. I’m trying to remember what was next. I can’t actually remember.

We then did mindfulness movement which made me feel like I was going to sleep. I discovered that very minor movements actually hurt me. Was interesting to see. Especially because the same movement – lifting my arm to shoulder height – sometimes hurt and sometimes didn’t. I could lift my left arm higher than my right. I was trying to experiment with slightly different movements. Sometimes it hurt other times not, I couldn’t figure out what caused it to hurt though… I was trying to see what I was doing differently but couldn’t see. I wonder if ED has a part to play in how the movements hurt. I think just exacerbated for I’ve always been extremely sensitive. What I also found interesting was when we were bringing our index fingers together with our eyes closed. I missed. I was shocked I missed! Definitely didn’t expect that… it was putting me to sleep.

I thought of sharing my experience but the facilitators asked the people who shared about what they were saying. I wouldn’t handle the questions. So didn’t.

They were then talking about how feel the edge of the comfort zone, you can do that physically and emotionally. Stay with the edge or retreat intentionally. For me staying with the edge emotionally mostly means it won’t exist, but if I’d do it sometimes it does. Sometimes I can stay with that edge.

Had a break then.

After the break spoke about non striving. I don’t really agree. They were saying to accept your reality. But I think the point is that we weren’t really disagreeing. Just they were being a little extreme. Because sometimes you have to strive. And that’s not a contradiction to accepting where you’re at. For example in order for me to live the life I want to I have to accept where I’m at and I have to strive. If I don’t accept where I’m at I’m living in denial. If I don’t strive I’ll end up dead.

Then they showed an image of what not accepting and accepting and put a bridge and asked us how we’d bridge it. How do we get from the negative and judgement from where we are to the mindfulness and non judgement. For the first time I tried to share. Because it would just be giving a word. I said curiosity. I wasn’t heard. I tried again to say acceptance after a couple other suggestions but again wasn’t heard. And then they went and said you bridge it with curiosity. And I freaked out. And I stayed with the freaking out.

The last few minutes was a short breathing space practice – I wasn’t able to focus at all on it as was freaking out. What it is: sit in whatever position. Be aware of your body in the position you’re in. Focus on your breathing in your stomach. Maybe count breaths a few times to help focus. Focus on breathing in your body. Time into your body. Tune into the world.

Was still freaking. They gave the homework. And I journalled a tad. Wrote a really short letter to myself that you matter. And wrote that out to myself – you matter/exist/are important.

And that was today’s. 3 out of 8.

Journaling 103 (6) What do I need in order for it to change?

I dialogue journalled last night for at least a couple hours. There’s both what I need in order to stop, and what I need or needs to change so that I don’t need the destruction.

In order to stop I just need support. What that would look like is people checking in with me. Believing in me. Telling me they believe in me. I don’t mean that they need to be updated on what/why. E would do that for me. She’d email me a short couple lines every so often.. As long as she doesn’t feel responsible or see it as a burden knowing it’s okay if she doesn’t, that would be okay. I just need people to be there. E would be. I can and have asked her in the past. I don’t know who else would.

And people who’ll stay in the loop. People who’ll be happy to be in touch however often works for them. Be there in whatever way works for them… just people. I need people in my life.

Support also looks like therapy. Not to process or change anything. Just someone to be there. Who I can share all I write with. Who I can drive crazy. In the way it was with my ex therapist AH. I’d email/whatsapp him a lot. That’s really where most our communication took place.

To be able to live life without using I need to be able to handle living life. How?

Mindfulness, being present, helps lots. And lots. Which is why I’m so grateful for the MBSR course I’m doing.

ACA may help – they’re doing a 6 week introduction starting in a few weeks. It’s a 12 step programme. I just don’t have the energy to look for people who have been in ACA for over a year who are living recovery. I did try to look but can’t at the moment. I do think it’ll help some though.

Journalling. That’s actually the biggest thing. Writing helps me process my world. I’ve always been told that my writing is the best therapy. AH used to tell me that a lot upon reading what I wrote. A couple other therapists I’ve been in touch with in the past said the same. I don’t process my world through talking to others. Which is why I’ve never wanted and would never use therapy to talk or process through talking. That’s what journaling is for.

Some way of learning skills. Either with a therapist (ideally) or through workbooks. Just needs to be with someone for I won’t actually do it on my own. Skills isn’t the right word. Primarily on learning to identify, recognise, and handle emotions and feelings. At the moment I believe I’m lying whenever I say I think or feel anything. Because it doesn’t stay or isn’t true a moment later. Sometimes I do stay with what I feel. Most times I don’t. Most times as soon as I engage with whatever it is, it just isn’t there. So mindfulness helps with being present. But more than that, I need to learn what/how etc. I want to experience emotions in my body and then be able to handle them. I thought I was learning to do that. Maybe I even was. Then I decided to try destroy my life (yeah, I blame myself for the destruction). I want to stop zoning out or freaking out. Whenever I try engage with myself I either zone out or freak out – cut off or it’s beyond too much.

I’m pretty certain I live with anxiety. But if that ever comes up I’ll deal with that then. I’ll only know if I do or don’t when I live with my feelings experientially. I think I do because that’s the only physical sensation I experience – not breathing or shaking


There are 2 main things that aren’t conducive to getting to a place of okayness.

1. Living at home. Mainly refererring to my mother and special needs sister. My other sister who lives at home I’m so grateful for. Yesterday I was dialogue journalling, making a plan for what I need and how to get there etc. Because I want to stop using. I came home in middle of journalling (I was away). When I picked up journalling my response was; I don’t know if I’m ready to stop. Why? Because I need it when I’m home. Using gives me a grip and handle on my world. Not eating does too. And when I’m home I need that grip so much more. My sn sister talks pretty literally all the time. I can’t not listen to someone talking to me. She needs attention all the time. She, and my mother, just use so much energy that I don’t have spare. It’s not healthy for me to live in my room. Being with them isn’t healthy either…

Living at home I don’t have the freedom to be myself. I can’t be myself. I can’t explore or learn who I am, would be, or want to be. That’s not as much of an issue as above. It’s something I’ll have to deal with some day. Whenever I leave the culture I’m living in I’ll destroy my father. My father is a really good person who doesn’t deserve to be hurt. Again that’s not for now. There’s also a lot of pressure and constant negative feedback at home.

The other big thing is work. Work is good because it gives structure. I can give myself that structure through volunteering. It’s not good because I don’t have the headspace. I’m using all my energy to just hold onto the world. To just stay okay. To try make the right choices – and constantly feel as though I’m failing. For I’m still using and I’m destroying myself. As long as I’m destroying myself I can’t really be trying. Or I’m not trying hard enough.

I teach. If I’m not giving my students my all I’m failing them. Also, I don’t teach the easy students. I teach those who need the help and support. I teach those who need 110%. I’m finding it really hard to focus on anything at all for long. I get distracted really easily. I’m not finding it easy to concentrate. I’m not really sleeping. I don’t know. Not really a point thinking about it. For I’m going to try… try give it my all and see. I am working less hours and not doing the part of my job I did last year that I hated. I’m going to be earning very little. Definitely not earning enough as it is. I’m still paying off a course that I haven’t done. Education that I really want but have no headspace for.


So in a few lines what does this leave me with?

In order to stop I really need to have more people as a support in my life. For various reasons most my friends aren’t an option. They’re friends and I’m grateful for them. Some of them are definitely a reason I don’t want to kill myself. They’ll want me there. E will be via email. Another E who I don’t know well would be also, just dunno what to ask her for. Support as in people not only friends. If my GP puts the referral through to the HBTT (home based treatment team) it would give me the pretty much 24/7 help I’d need to handle stopping. If not, I don’t know.

Learning – mindfulness I’m doing. Hopefully will do ACA. And I don’t know. I don’t know how to learn the rest… if the NHS will offer any of it. If they don’t could ask someone I’m thinking of privately, just not relevant as long as there’s any risk factors in my life. Which as long as I’m using there are. (Food or any other self harm isn’t a risk factor in that way).

Living at home isn’t good for me but I don’t have another option at the moment. Working isn’t good for me but unless I have some way of getting money it also isn’t an option to just stop working.

Random sorta unrelated positive comment. I’m thinking of buying myself a new expensive phone. Been pushing if off in a large part because it’s a waste of time to buy it if I may not be around to enjoy it. But I will be. Or as I said to TC, I think I’ll get to 2700 gratitudes when I’m 27 (I’m writing out gratitudes, aiming for 2700 different ones for when I turn 27), and it’s kinda amazing in a neutral way that I actually envision myself turning 27.

MBSR (3) – Mindfulness and grounding

Mindfulness attitudes - Beginner’s Mind or Curiosity, Patience, Non-judging, Non-striving, Kindness and Compassion towards ourselves and others, Trust, Acceptance or Allowing, Letting Go 

What does mindfulness mean?

What is mindfulness?

What does mindfulness do?

The way I’d put it simply is being present. To be mindful is to be aware. To be present. Am some people think mindfulness is the same as meditation. Meditation is focus and stillness and is really a different ballgame. It’s got some similarities though. They’re both being present. Being aware. Just being. Just living.

When I’m mindful, aware of what is at this moment, I’m going to be living with my primary experiences, rather than secondary, tertiary or can’t remember what Greg told me. He told me quadary experience – whatever the right word is.

I’ve gone off on a tangent.


I find mindfulness to be grounding. Because I’m doing this course and trying to choose something to be mindful with, and of course I didn’t choose my daily activity because in the same way I’m rambling here and probably making you dizzy with the spinning and jumping and run on ness why would I think of one specific activity and as if I’d even remember during that one activity and then I’d anyways have to choose a different one so I’m doing that now as it is and don’t worry I’ll repeat this…


Mindfulness. Being present. If you read my trigger warning post – I’m intentionally not linking – you’ll understand what I mean. I’m grounding myself a lot. Focusing on where exactly my body is in space and time. Being aware of myself in my body. Being aware of my body in the world. Tuning into it. Tuning into what is going on. Like the sound of the cars and the annoying squeak of the light.

I’m finding it grounding. Because I’m trying to tune in. I’m intentionally tuning in often. Which i definitely think is a good thing.

It’s quite funny to write this, how taking the course is helping me, because we’re meant to listen to a guided mindfulness (which is guided imagery, or guided presentness) once a day. Being that I’m listening to the body scans in bed I try listen to another one during the day too. Anyways, I find it really hard to focus. I’m distracted the entire time. It takes till the end of the recording for me to actually be focusing on it.

I guess I’m saying that in some ways I’m not doing this being mindful well at all. And yet I am. So I’m not able to focus through the recordings… I focus for a few seconds at a time if you’re lucky. And I’m grounding myself lots. And lots. Which I definitely need at the moment….

I didn’t plan on writing this about me. Just about how mindfulness can be grounding and can be used as a tool to remember to be aware of where one is in space and time. To tune into the reality and help one be present. But this is what is 🙂

I’d definitely recommend mindfulness. But if you do a course research it. I did one through other places which were a waste of time. MBSR is a great one. You can do it for free online at Palouse MBSR Course. I wouldn’t have the motivation. You can google it. If you’re in England a lot of MIND charities offer it subsidised or for free. I’ve seen some great and some nonsense books. I like the first page of Mind Calm.

Love, light and glitter.

MBSR (2) – Primary and Secondary Experiences

Mindfulness attitudes - Beginner’s Mind or Curiosity, Patience, Non-judging, Non-striving, Kindness and Compassion towards ourselves and others, Trust, Acceptance or Allowing, Letting Go 

I don’t think I’ll write this well but wanted to put this down for someone here.

Random thought. Mindfulness reminds me a lot of Innate Health. Of just being.


Reminder of mindfulness attitudes

• Beginners mind – curiosity
• Not judging
• Patience
• Non striving – don’t stress too much – have a goal but don’t put too much pressure/time frame
• Kindness and compassion to self and others.
• Trust in the process and yourself.
• Acceptance and allowing – letting whatever you experience be, and accept it. It just is.
• Letting go. Being in the moment. Letting things be as they are.


There are our primary experiences. Our secondary experiences. And tertiary experiences. Going on and on.

The primary experience is what actually happened. In the mindfulness class they gave the example of being stuck in a traffic jam. The secondary experience which they called everything is how you react to that. The tertiary experience would be the reaction to the reaction – I know they didn’t say it but I think it’s true. And we can go on and on. I just don’t know the name for number 4 which is why I’m not saying fourthery…

There are 3 ways we experience things

  1. Physically/somatically – in our bodies
  2. Mentally – in our heads (thoughts)
  3. Emotionally – our feelings.

These are all secondary to what happened.

Primary – I’m stuck in a traffic jam 》 secondary – I may panic (physically) I’m going to be late, and/or wonder what everyone will think of me (mentally), and/or be angry I’m stuck (emotionally). 》Tertiary – I may feel guilty for being angry. I may think I shouldn’t care. I may judge myself for whatever my reactions are…..


I didn’t sleep all night and I’m exhausted the next day which gives me much less headspace for people.

That’s what happened. Those are the facts. Usually I may get frustrated and upset and blame myself or shut down.

The point of mindfulness is just to be aware. To identify the actual experience. To identify the response. To identify after that.

If I’m aware of what the actual experience is, I can stop the spiral. For me that’s the thought spiral as I don’t feel much or really experience anything much in my body.


I’m late for work.

The fact is I’m late for work. It happens to all of us. I could panic. I could know that I’ll be fired because I was late. I could judge myself for being s bad teacher. I could break down in tears.

I could then also react to my reaction. If someone made me late and I yelled at them I could hate myself for that.

Or I could pause. Either in the middle or afterwards. And see, okay I was late for the work. If I notice it there. Or see that I was late for work and yelled. I was late for work and cried. I was late for work and panicked. Whatever the experience was, was.

The best example I can think of is the thought spiral I entered when I knew my period was going to start in a couple days, and that lead to the surety that I’d be dead through suicide. When I was aware of the entire spiral I actually found it funny. Because c’mon. I have my period every month (or not). We all do (or not). I found it humourous to see how that my period was going to start had translated to I’m going to kill myself. Following and identifying the thought cycle that had lead there was eye opening. Not exactly on primary and secondary experiences, but on topic.

MBSR – mindfulness course, thoughts (1)

Mindfulness attitudes - Beginner’s Mind or Curiosity, Patience, Non-judging, Non-striving, Kindness and Compassion towards ourselves and others, Trust, Acceptance or Allowing, Letting Go 

Just noticed that my upper arms were tense. But coz I noticed it they aren’t so much (often when I tune into something it’s too much so isn’t there) . I’m definitely more aware of my body. Ive been writing out some of my last letters to myself, in them I was often grounding myself in them. Describing where my body is in space and time. Was interesting kinda to read and rewrite. Like now I feel my body pressing into the bed. My neck is turned. I hear music playing. The room is a bit hot. The cover is on my arm.

I’m doing that – noticing my body a lot the last couple weeks. I’m thinking it’s coz of this MBSR course. I think that’s partially why but not only. I think it’s because of the one I did a year, or was it 2 years ago, too. I’m grateful I’m doing it again. Even if and though I can’t share during it. When they email us the homework I hope to reply to ask if they can offer us to share our thoughts both by jumping in like it has been, or through the chat feature.

I did talk. Near the beginning they split us into breakout rooms to discuss last weeks homework. And they put me with a girl who looks to be around my age. Well anywhere between 20 and 30. And a guy. And they both weren’t talking so I started it. After the breakout rooms, in the group, every person shared with everyone what they thought. Well, almost everyone :). Thankfully I was the last person they asked. So it was a non issue that I didn’t. I couldn’t. Which is why it was only almost everyone. One of the guys didn’t realise I had been on last week. Probably coz of that. That everyone else who was on spoke. There were 2 or 3 new people. I like a lot of them.

I’m liking the course. Because just the fact of doing it helps. Because I’m remembering more to just see where I am now. Because part of the homework is to choose a daily task to be mindful during I hadn’t chosen an activity. So often during the day I thought I hadn’t, so just tuned in to where exactly I am and what’s going on. Like this moment I feel the phone in my hands, the air, breathing.

And they take away all pressure. They’re very much there is no right and wrong. It’s in the scripts. Everything is do this if it’s good, if it’s not don’t. Interesting to hear the people giving the course completely reading off the scripts. I know it’s scripted because there are recordings by others on the MIND site and they’re using the exact same words the entire time. The focus is acceptance, awareness, compassion, curiosity.

Someone said that the last one made her sad. As soon as she was tuning in to her body she was just so sad. Rich, one of the instructors (there’s 3, one who has trained, 2 training to be instructors), said how mindfulness is always about tune in when it’s good for you, and don’t when it’s not. Don’t do what’s not comfortable or too much. Step back. Open your eyes.

They asked what would feel physically, what would think, what would think. Someone asked what the difference between body and feeling was. They were what a great question… I liked that they were making everything valid, that people could consider stupid.

I didn’t like how when someone shared anything they’d question it. When anyone shared anything they’d ask them what that meant to them, what that was like for them, or whatever. Actually if I ever talk on there – 6 more weeks, I hope I do (!) – I’d have to tell them not to. That if I share I need no questions after. I can’t handle people questioning what I’ve said, or asking me to explain it. Freaks me out. Makes me feel unheard. Hmm. Not just that. Dunno. Whatever.

This week meant to do body scan 3 days and body and breath 3 days. The body scan puts me to sleep. However, doing it is good. Because I think maybe doing it often enough may make me automatically be aware of where my body is in space and time more.

Body and breath is a nice one I think. Though when he did it during the course it was really hard to focus. There were so many pauses, so I was only focusing when he was talking. And at least half the time he was talking about I dunno what. About being aware of whatever comes up and giving it space or something or another but it wasn’t directed enough for me to actually focus on it. So it was putting me to sleep. And made me feel very untethered.

Going to put on the body scans now I think. Worst/best is they send me to sleep. I’m more than happy if they send me to sleep. And if they don’t, it’s good for me to practice. The body/breath if I remember it, and I remember that I really liked it (not sure what doing it in real was so different to what I remember from last time and what I think the recording is), is really good to do first thing in the morning.

I’d really like to eventually train with them. To be a teacher. If I do 2 courses in a row – which I’m hoping to. This via zoom, then whenever they do it in real life. Then it’ll be 4 months of structured practice. Regardless if I keep a time for structured practice or not it’s good. Will be good.