Anxiety can create mental clutter that can stop us in our tracks. Anxious feelings sneak up on us when we least expect it. We have to take care of ourselves before we can care for others and tackle a busy and potentially stressful day. If we begin and end our day with mindful activities, we may be better able to focus on what is important and healthy and tune out what is not.
What if we could take a few moments for ourselves first thing every day to calm our minds? Instead of picking up the cell phone as soon as the alarm goes off and scrolling news/email, how about reading a daily devotional—preferably on paper and not on a gadget—or a few verses in your Bible? I keep my Bible and a journal by the bedside to remind me to do this. If you do this one small thing before diving into your daily tasks, focus and calm sets in. I also journal for a few minutes and have found that my days start out better when I dump my thoughts onto the page before my feet hit the ground and my busy day starts. Let’s prioritize ourselves and our most important relationship—the one we have with God. Make spending time with God the first thing on your daily to-do list! Try it for a week and let me know how it goes. You may be surprised.
Is there something you enjoy doing? A hobby that you’ve let go because of busyness? For me, I’ve picked up crochet. I recently started working on little squares that I can put together down the road into a cozy blanket. Scheduling bite sized pleasant and stress relieving projects can help calm anxiety and relieve emotional clutter. It can also help us replace habits that don’t serve us well or time wasters (social media or tv binges/unhealthy snacking) that cause regret. While crafting, I like to listen to positive music, audiobooks, and have been considering different audio Bible apps. Sometimes silence is great, and I’ll use the noise canceling headphones that I mentioned yesterday to provide that extra layer of quiet, so I can meditate and relax with my project.
As Paul so eloquently stated in Philippians 4:6, we should not be anxious about anything, God will guard our hearts and minds.
Friend, let’s give these ideas a try. We are worth it.