the mind at rest or in a frenzy?

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Zeno Marx

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The older you get, do you find it more difficult to control your mind? Can you put it to rest, or is it always racing or scattered?

I'm finding it difficult to get my mind to rest. Sometimes a problem concentrating on a single thing. Not always when I'm ready to sleep, but it can be a problem then, too. Not necessarily anxiety, but maybe an element of that as well. To stop the do do do mentality and be present. It sounds like new age hoopla, but it's a priority of mine. I feel it is important to my life and health. I remember when I was younger and seeing the movie Mask about Rocky Dennis. How his mother (Cher) got him to distract himself from the pain of his cranium squeezing his brain. To concentrate on sitting on the beach, and then deconstruct the situation down to each grain of sand. Basically, she was teaching him to meditate. Chanting. The Rosary. Breathing. Meditation in different forms. Believe it or not, I used to do it with skateboard tricks. Breaking the motions down to frames. Imagine how each part of my foot was moving. My toes moving inside my shoes inside my socks. What the board looked like in the air in still frames. The wheels turning in the air. The ball bearings rolling in their housing. From the big picture to the minutia. I had a great success rate with that process, but not as great anymore. I'm finding it is more about a feeling that I can't control that is affecting my mind than necessarily just my mind being busy and unable to stop. Maybe that IS anxiety? I'm just surprised that I'm having more problems with it now than I have in a very long time. I work out. I'm mindful of low-level stimulants like sugar, carbs, and caffeine.

So, I'm curious, if you experience something similar, if you've found this more of an issue as you age?
 

Blackhorse

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Carlos

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I use a noisemaker when going to bed. For years one of those fan things making whitenoise. Now an electronic one with surf sounds. My mind in the past sometimes got me up at night running in circles. I would get up and get on the radio. Or read.

And hearing. I could hear the slightest noise at the other end of the house. Things going on at the grain elevator several blocks away. The neighbors, doing what people do. It's probably why some people drink themselves into a stupor each night.
 

Blackhorse

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And hearing. I could hear the slightest noise at the other end of the house. Things going on at the grain elevator several blocks away. The neighbors, doing what people do.

This is me. Especially low range sounds…car doors shutting…the night train rolling through town…Mastodons gallumping across the local mud flat…yeah. So HEARING the sounds is high level for me but INTERPRETING the cause is sometimes not so much.
 

DWSmith

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I've mentioned here before I'm convinced that as a society we've set ourselves up to develop Attention Deficit Disorder; social networking, news on TV and radio jumping around from topic to topic with commercials littered throughout, short little sound bites here and there, racing through stupid emails and little news feeds at 100 mph, a half dozen work meetings a day just jabbering, etc.

At work we used to have a boss 3 levels up from me that was convinced that multi-tasking was a very valuable skill to have and use. I used to leave out on my desk a printed copy of an article titled The Myth of Multi-Tasking hoping she would see it.

You would think that as pipe smokers we'd take the time during our smoking to meditate or cogitate on nature, our surroundings, a challenging book, true meditation, play a chess game, do crossword or jigsaw puzzles, or some other form of focusing our minds and I'm sure many of us do these sometimes.

I truly think this is another widespread, serious issue that needs to be worked on individually. People need to become aware of this.

A week of vacation can provide a shot of help with this but I think this is but one more reason I should retire soon. :D
 
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Timbo

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The closest I come to meditation would be when I'm taking the time to have a pipe, though that ends up rousing my brain so I can actually concentrate on things. So not a good thing to have before bed.

My brain tends to switch between lots of different strands of thought, especially when trying to sleep, probably why I was a big user of the Devil's lettuce when I was younger. I've switched to whisky to get to sleep since then and have put on a good deal of weight but when I try to stop the nightly drinks I can't get to sleep at all. In fact this next week I'm hoping to see the doctor about getting a THC/CBD prescription so I can ease off the whisky.
 

DWSmith

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Sounds like a severe case of 'monkey mind'. The mind is bouncing around like a monkey on a string/tether. Try to get a better handle on meditation.

It annoys my wife that she has trouble going to sleep but I'm asleep less than 2 minutes after hitting the sheets.
 
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Timbo

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Sounds like a severe case of 'monkey mind'. The mind is bouncing around like a monkey on a string/tether. Try to get a better handle on meditation.

It annoys my wife that she has trouble going to sleep but I'm asleep less than 2 minutes after hitting the sheets.
I've tried to get into meditation but my mind wanders too much for it to be of benefit.

My ex was the same, she'd go to sleep almost instantly whilst I tossed and turned.
 
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