Taking Hold of Your Mind

The following is courtesy of DBT and Marsha Linehan

OBSERVE
– Notice your body sensations.
– Pay attention on purpose, to the present moment.
– Control your attention, but not what you see. Push away nothing. Cling to nothing.
– Practice wordless watching: watch thoughts come into your mind and let them slip right by like clouds in the sky. Notice each feeling, rising and falling, like waves in the ocean.
– Observe both inside and outside yourself.

DESCRIBE
– Put words on the experience. When a feeling or thought arise, or you do something, acknowledge it. For example, say in your mind, “Sadness has just enveloped me.”
– Label what you observe. Put a name on your feelings. Label a thought as just a thought, a feeling as just a feeling, an action as just an action.
– Unglue your interpretations and opinions from the facts. Describe the “who, what, when, and where” that you observe. Just the facts.

PARTICIPATE
– Throw yourselves completely into activities of the current moment. Do not separate yourself from what is going on in the moment.
– Become one with whatever you are doing, completely forgetting yourself.
– Go with the flow. Respond with spontaneity.

NONJUDGMENTALLY
– See, but don’t evaluate as good or bad.
– Acknowledge the difference between the helpful and the harmful, the safe and the dangerous, but don’t judge them.
– When you find yourself judging, don’t judge the judging.

MINDFULLY
– Rivet yourself to the now.
– Do one thing at a time.
– Let go of distractions.
– Concentrate on one thing.

EFFECTIVELY
– Be mindful of your goals in the situation.
– Focus on what works.
– Act as skillfully as you can.
– Let go of willfulness.

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