Have you ever walked into your house to find the TV on, radio blaring, and multiple people in your family trying to talk over each other? It's not so pleasant, is it? Have you ever asked yourself why it's not a pleasant feeling?
I believe one reason why this is not an attractive feature is that the mind tends to be busy enough as it is. More than not, the mind tends to dwell on bad things that happened in the past or think about what it doesn't want to happen the day after.
Take for example how a muscle grows from working out at a gym. The muscle doesn't necessarily grow from working out. The muscle grows during the healing and resting process after you leave the gym. It grows from rest. It grows from proper nourishment.
The same holds true for the mind. The mind needs periodic breaks from overthinking. The mind tends to wander into the past and wander into the future regularly and much-needed breaks from this pattern are necessary to keep the mind in shape.
Have you ever wondered why it's so peaceful to go for a walk in nature? Have you ever wondered why sitting next to the ocean and listening to the waves seem to have a healing effect? Have you ever wondered why escaping for the weekend in your cabin, void of Wifi, TV, and radio seems to make time slow down?
One reason why time seems to slow down while in a place with minimal distractions is that we are more likely to concentrate on the present moment. Concentrating on the present moment means that we get out of our heads and become fully absorbed in what's surrounding us. Living in the present occurs when we pay full attention to that given moment.
When we absorb ourselves in what's happening at this very moment, we must stop thinking. While in this frame of mind we are no longer consumed with the bothers of yesterday or the fears of tomorrow. Living in the present moment is the rest that the mind needs to work as efficiently as it possibly can.
Let me give you another example: What happens when you pour hot water from your kitchen faucet for a straight hour? You're going to notice that the water will eventually run cold. Why? It's because you're using all the hot water in your hot water tank. How do you resolve this issue? Easy, you turn off the water and allow the hot water to build up. The mind works in kind of the same way. In order for the mind to work as best it can, it needs breaks. Living in the present moment is that break.
Or let's say you're out for a run on a beautiful day. You run for five miles and then in order to continue to run more, you need to take a break. You break for a half-hour and then are able to run again. Why can you run again? It's because, of course, you gave yourself a break.
The mind needs breaks as well. When we are feeling overwhelmed or feel like there is not enough time to get everything done it's time to consider resting the mind.
Turn off your TV, radio, cell phone and computer. Get out in nature. Sit in silence or meditate. Read a book. Go for a walk. There are lots of ways to take 'mind breaks'.
The most important thing is that you take that step. When we take a step we are making progress. When we are making progress amazing things can happen.
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