Psychotherapist Kate Love shares three rituals to quiet a busy mind, each one taking 5 minutes or less.
Why are rituals important?
One of the most common reasons people don’t engage with ritual and ceremony is because they think they don’t have time. The other reason we hear often is they don’t know where to start!
Coming this Summer, we will be launching a series of Daily Rituals in our App, each one designed to help you build your ceremonial muscles and weave ritual into your everyday practice. With dozens of rituals to choose from, we will offer simple, accessible rituals that take 5 minutes or less, helping you go from busy to mindful with the power of ritual.
The cost of being busy
In our modern day society, busyness has become our default mode – we wake up with a To-Do list swirling in our minds, we eat on the go, we check our phones constantly, and we pile things on until we break. The cost of being busy is high, both on our physical body and our mental state. Finding ways to quiet a busy mind starts with acknowledging that busyness shouldn’t be our default state.
“Becoming ceremonial involves building our ritual muscles on a day-to-day basis. The more we engage with simple rituals on a daily basis, the stronger our practice becomes, so when something big or challenging happens in our world, we have rituals ready to draw from.”Megan Sheldon
It’s important in our work to dispel the myth that ritual is time consuming, costly, or requires expertise; for us, ritual is an act of remembering what we already know to be true. You don’t need to purchase any items or follow a set structure ~ you simply need to be intentional with your actions and draw on symbols that are meaningful to you.
Be Ceremonial is here to inspire you with ideas and guide you when you need support. Our mission is to help you reimagine your own relationship with ritual and ceremony, because we believe intentional rituals have the power to transform the way we experience and shape the world.
Here are 3 rituals to quiet a busy mind
1. A series of questions
Choose a series of questions that you ask yourself when things get busy or when you are winding down for the day. It can be as simple as: What am I feeling now? Where do I feel it? What can I do to support that feeling? We also love the Dark / Light / Horizon combo:
- What is your dark right now (what’s weighing on you or causing stress or grief)?
- What is your light (what’s bringing you joy or delight)?
- What’s on your horizon (what are you looking forward to or anticipating)?
2. Do Nothing (time yourself)
Take 1 to 5 minutes to do nothing. Look out the window, ground your feet into the floor, scan the room around you. It’s a challenge to quiet our busy minds, so the key is to not judge if this is difficult or takes practice to execute. Look for built in timers in your day-to-day life, like while the kettle is boiling or when your alarm goes off.
3. Take Deep Breaths
Notice your breath – is it shallow? Is it fast? Is it heavy? Pay attention to your breathing and then create an opportunity to go deeper.
You can follow a set breath pattern, like box breathing (inhale for 4, hold for 4, exhale for 4, rest for 4). There are lots of techniques for deep breathing you can explore ~ the key is to start small and carve out times in your day.
Deep breaths help you take more air into your lungs, which signals to your brain that you can calm down and relax, and then your brain broadcasts that message to the rest of the body. So your breathing rate slows, blood pressure decreases, muscles relax.
Just breathing is fine (necessary even) but paying attention to the content of your breath can elevate the experience into the ritual realm. Infusing these micro-rituals into your day might seem small, but action + intention = ritual, and rituals help us build our ceremonial muscles.
Building your ritual muscles
The more you practice checking in with yourself daily, the better you know yourself, your triggers, your impulses, your joy. It may become easier to assess your emotional temperature and keep finding ways to show up for yourself in service to being the best version of yourself.
Some days it will work, and some days it will feel impossible. When this happens, simply start over with a beginner’s mind. There is no goal, there is no finish line. Being ceremonial is a practice with no mistakes and no end game.
We will be hosting a free workshop for our members later this summer on the science of ceremony and the benefits of daily ritual. If you haven’t joined our Village yet, consider starting a Be Ceremonial membership today!