A psychologist and author who deals in stress, anxiety, depression and addiction has come up with a simple but powerful technique to help readers improve their lives. He tells them to S.T.O.P.: S – Stop; T – Take a deep breath; O – Observe what’s happening in this moment in your mind, body and surroundings; and P-Proceed with what has to be done right here and now.
This easy, 5-second exercise in mindfulness has the effect of short-circuiting our tendency to act out of habit, and consciously think about our next step. It’s a way of connecting to the present moment, of becoming instantly aware of what is most important to us, and then focusing on it.
The psychologist, Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D., talks about S.T.O.P. and other techniques in his book The Now Effect, which zeros in on that space between stimulus and response—that tiny but all-powerful moment between the time something triggers a thought or emotion in us, and our reaction to it.
According to the author, it’s also a way of breaking free from automatic negative thoughts. We can stop watering the seeds of our own suffering by giving ourselves a moment to consider the source of our negative thoughts, to acknowledge the past pain or wounding experience they bring up, and begin to release them.
Read more about the life-changing “Now Effect” here.