It’s a dangerous game I play – pushing, no punishing, myself to my mental limit. There is a kind of pain, that is perilous...
Although I feel fortunate to have not had any serious mental issues, my mind has certain tendencies that I have found very difficult to address.
There are many instances where my thinking just goes into overdrive. When I’m faced with a difficult decision to make or a stressful situation to face, my thoughts start racing to the point that I expend all my energy, leaving me burnt out and stressed. Even in normal, everyday situations like driving or doing the dishes, my mind takes every opportunity to drift off and daydream. And at a certain point I completely lose focus and find it almost impossible to bring my mind back.
I’ve also always had low self-esteem, constantly comparing myself to other people and feeling insecure about my limitations. Especially in the South Asian community, I always feel like I need to prove myself to others, whether it be the aunties and uncles at family dinner parties or my friends and fellow students on campus. And I always feel ashamed of myself for not knowing or understanding something that may be simple or obvious to everyone else.
For the past few years, I’ve been doing some serious introspection into my mind and its tendencies. I’ve been practicing breathing and meditation everyday, and I listen to discourses on mental health from various wisdom teachers. I’ve realized the importance of living in the present moment, and the value in taking some time out of each day to close my eyes, be with myself and give my mind & thoughts a break.