Ever feel like you are second guessing your life choices? Parenting strategies? Made the wrong dinner reservation? You’re not alone! Plenty of us are living our lives wondering if we are doing it all wrong. One guess is that you might be not asking yourself the right questions. Here’s where the skills of Mindfulness and Wise Mind come into play.
Instead of asking yourself “what do I want to do?” Try asking yourself “how do I feel?” And then “what do I want?” Last step is- go for it!
This methodology comes straight from DBT (Dialectical Behavior Therapy), specifically the technique known as: Wise Mind. Wise Mind is where your rational awareness and emotional mind join. It is the amalgamation of your emotions and rationality. Linehan states, “Wisemind is that part of each person that can know and experience truth. It is where the person knows something to be true or valid. It is almost always quiet, It has a certain peace. It is where the person knows something in a centered way.”
To put this skill into action, really use your imagination here, try making a road map of how you envision your life. Where are you now? What are some stops you would like to make along the way? Where do you want to end up?
The key factor is being mindful of your emotions along the way. How can you make the right dinner reservation if you don’t even know if you feel hungry. So the best place to start is to ask yourself “how do I feel?” Try this at various points throughout your day. Pay attention to your feelings. Please try not to judge them or nudge them away. Just listen to your feelings. One method is to close your eyes, and really sink into yourself. Keep envisioning your feelings until you feel an answer- there are no wrong feelings! Just give yourself the peace and time to listen.
After you know how you feel, the next question to ask yourself is: what do I want? The answer will most likely be clearer now that you have identified the initial feeling. Feeling energized? Go for a walk. Feeling lonely? Make a plan with a friend. Feeling hungry? How about that dinner reservation!
So are you doing it all wrong? Maybe! And that’s ok. Give yourself permission to be wrong. Just be you! Follow your emotions and the rest of your road map will come alive. Happy travels!