By AFEA member Clive Maxwell-Yates
One of the ways that I’ve discovered to be mindful is to turn yourself into a human jukebox and bury the internal dialogue under a constant stream of songs. We all know 100s if not 1,000s of songs that we’ve listened to over the course of our lives. In the beginning, it might be a little hard to constantly (and silently) recall and mentally sing along to these songs, but with a little bit of practice, you’ll find that it comes naturally. Don’t expect miracles, it will take you a few days to get into the routine. You’ll forget to do it or find that you can’t think of a song but persevere. Despite the initial hiccups you’ll encounter, after a few days you’ll find all those songs that you’ve known throughout your life will suddenly be popping up inside your head. The next beginning as the previous one ends. You might have to select the songs initially, but you will reach a point where the songs select themselves. They’ll just pop into your head.
When you talk to someone, don’t let that switch the songs off. Try and keep the songs going all the time, regardless of what you’re doing. This changes conversations, since instead of planning what you’re going to say, you need to trust that what you say will be the right response and just let go. There may be occasions when it’s impossible to keep the songs going, like when you’re performing difficult or complex tasks. But as soon as you are able, switch the songs back on.
When you get to the level when the songs are running continuously, allow a part of yourself to observe the songs that you’re selecting. Is there a pattern there? Are the song indicating what’s going on inside you? Try to observe yourself without allowing the internal dialogue to kick in. You don’t want thoughts interrupting the flow of the songs. You’re only passively observing yourself. Uncluttering the mind of our endless thoughts can have a very relaxing and calming effect. It allows us to just be in the moment. To experience things from a new perspective. Try it and see how it makes you feel. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.
All the best,