The ongoing police violence and the nationwide protests targeting people of color have had a traumatizing affect on many members of the community. Unaddressed, this trauma can cause lasting damage to both physical and emotional well-being. Practicing mindfulness after a protest or any encounter with racism, can reduce stress and anxiety and improve the ability to cope with the ongoing unrest.
Start a Daily Practice of Mindfulness
Beginning the day with meditation can instill you with a foundation of calmness, improve your mood throughout the day and enable you to face any challenges throughout the day with composure. It allows you to focus on what is happening in the moment to slow down the ruminating thoughts in your head. You can start out with three to five minutes of meditation after waking up and try to gradually increase to 10 to 15 minutes. Deep breathing exercises can also help by releasing endorphins in your system that help you calm down. The advantage of deep breathing is that you can do it anywhere.
A Quick Grounding Technique to Help in Moments of Stress
If you are experiencing an extremely stressful moment, try this tactic, which is embraced by practitioners of dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT). Take a look around and name five things you see, four things you can touch, three things you can hear, two things you can smell, and one you can taste. This exercise will help ground you in the present moment and not focus on the past or near future. You can also do deep belly breathing. Sit or lie flat in a comfortable position. Place one hand on your belly just below your ribs and the other hand on your chest. Breath in deeply in through your nose, and let your belly push your hand out. Your chest should not move. Breathe out through pursed lips as if you are whistling. Feel the hand on your belly go in, and use it to push all the air out. Repeat this process three to 10 times.
Practice Mindfulness in the Form of Other Activities
Partaking in relaxing activities like coloring or other forms of crafts can put your brain in a meditative state. Exercise can also help relieve stress as well as writing in a journal, listening or playing music, or praying. All of these activities can give you time to reflect and will be emotionally beneficial. It is important to remember that meditation and mindfulness is not a quick fix for your stressors. Meditation is a practice that can be done anywhere at any time. Mindfulness is a coping mechanism that will improve your mental health when you most need it.
Mindfulness can be a great tool that can help destress your body whether you are dealing with racial trauma or just need to relax. Alta Loma’s integrative approach to recovery includes meditation, dialectical behavioral therapy, art therapy, and many other modalities that foster mindfulness and aid recovery. Our all male program specializes in helping men with co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders achieve the emotional and psychological stability that will allow them to focus on sustainable, long-term recovery. Located in Georgetown, Texas, Alta Loma Transformational Center offers care for your mind, body and spirit to facilitate comprehensive healing. Every addiction experience is unique. Our team of compassionate experts understand addiction in all its forms and can help you identify the tools you need for a successful and sustained recovery. If you are ready to embark upon a journey to long-term good health, call (866) 457-3843 to find out how to get started.