Anxiety and Mindfulness

Be Happy – The Anxiety Secrets You Need to Know...

Step 1. Select Which Type of Anxiety You Suffer With

Anxiety and philosophy – what the heck do they have in common, and why’s it important for you? Read on and I’ll tell you…

Back in high school I read a philosophical essay by Albert Camus called “The Myth of Sisyphus.” (Bear with me here it will all make sense in a moment)

It made a BIG impression on me. In the essay, Camus talks about man’s futile search for a sense of meaning in the face of crazy illogical world. He goes on and compares the craziness and struggles of our lives with the situation of Sisyphus…

Sisyphus was a figure of Greek mythology, who was condemned to repeat forever the same meaningless task of pushing a rock up a mountain, only to see it roll down again. Don’t we all know *that* feeling all to well?!

Anyway, Camus concludes by saying:

“The struggle itself is enough to fill a man’s heart. One must imagine Sisyphus happy.”

Read that quote again. Why? Because in those few words you will find one of the keys for conquering your anxiety. There are two reasons…

Reason One: Emotional control and happiness is an ongoing process. When you are worried and wracked with anxiety, or down and depressed, those feelings occupy you at the expense of too many other things. I’ve been there.

And in fact I still have “off” days every now and again *Everyone does* But that’s not important. What is important is how you handle pushing that rock up the hill only for it to roll all the way back down again…

Like many people I’d get fed-up and down about the constant seemingly non-stop struggle and worry. But I was totally blind to what was really going on…

But now, when I have an off day, I’m aware of what’s happening. I ask myself “What’s really happening, RIGHT NOW, this very second?” I bring my mind back to the present moment.

When my mind is in the present moment, it’s not wallowing about the past, or worrying about the future. Yes, sometimes being in the present moment hurts, but by being aware of it, by accepting your anxiety and depression now, it begins to dissipate.

But there’s also a second reason why Sisyphus’s struggle is important to understand…

Reason Two: If you excessively focus on the goal, that “someday” you will finally be “free of anxiety” or have “un-ending peace and happiness” or whatever — if all you care about is getting that rock up to the top of the hill — you are reducing the now to a mere stepping stone.

When this happens life ceases to be an adventure, and becomes an obsessive need to arrive, to MAKE IT. In effect you are letting life pass you by, perhaps without even realizing…

You see, it isn’t TIME that’s precious, because time is an illusion. So many people sit around doing nothing and say to themselves, “I’ll get around to that eventually.” Or they endlessly *prepare* and never take action.

The “now” is precious, because it’s what most of us miss.

Any work toward planning or achieving goals happens now, but at the same time you need to appreciate each moment as best you can and not let life be something that just happens in the future.

As Eckhart Tolle says, “Now, the present moment, is the most precious thing because it’s the ONLY thing.” All we have is the present moment.

Honor that moment.

2 Responses to “Anxiety and Mindfulness”

Mary said on March 18, 2008:

Fantastic article. I 100% agree, mindfulness is the way forward for dealing anxiety.

Stephen Tyler said on March 18, 2008:

I used to suffer with really bad panic attacks, but then one day I got hold of Eckhart Tolle’s mindfulness stuff. It totally changed the way I think and as a result I’m so much more in control of my panic attacks. So much of it is in your mind. And if you can sort your thought processes out panic attacks are a lot easier to control.

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