May 5, 2015
I know I haven’t written in a while! I guess that developing a writer’s block after publishing over 1,800 articles is not surprising. Today, one of my patients told me something worth writing about. We were discussing anxiety and I told him that trying to live in the future causes anxiety and that living in the past causes depression. Living for today is your best chance at happiness.
He shared with me that his wife often tells her patients, “Your mind is like a puppy. You have to keep corralling it and bringing it back when it wanders.” Yes, many of my patients seem to have the mind of an untrained puppy, constantly wandering off to all kinds of places, many of which are potentially dangerous.
I have often written about the “would’ve, could’ve, should’ve” syndrome that draws my patients into the past where they replay their lives and past mistakes only to find that, in the end, all they accomplish is destroying the here and now. I have also written many articles about those who spend so much time worrying about the future that they ruin the present.
Perhaps we all need to train our minds much the same as we would train a puppy. So put a leash on your mind and when it starts to wander into the future or the past, give a gentle yank on your leash and pull your mind back into the here and now. I bet you’ll be happier!