One Year No Beer Podcast Episode 020 – Mindfulness Myth Busting with Dr. Itai Ivtzan
I am hosting today’s episode of One Year No Beer all by my lonesome. Ruari is out taking care of the last minute details of our second launch, and we’re both really excited for you to see what we have in store for our OYNB-ers! We are always working to find new ways to help you guys quit drinking and start making positive changes for yourselves and in your lives. And today’s guest goes right along with this kind of positive thinking.
Dr. Itai Ivtzan is a mindfulness guru. I have known him since Uni where I attended his MA course in Positive Psychology. He completely transformed my way of thinking. Mindfulness practice focuses on the self. It’s a tool you can use in your everyday life to get to know yourself better and to recognize where and when stressors start pulling you down. Nothing is more stressful than quitting drinking, we can all agree on that, and the practical tips we talk about today will really help you overcome these difficult next hundred days.
“Mindfulness practice reflects you at a given day at a given moment.”
Our minds are always wandering. We are daydreaming. We’re fantasizing about the future or we’re stressing about the past. You could be thinking about a pint right now and stressing because you know you can’t have it. That’s where Dr. Itai says we’re doing it wrong. Mindfulness forces you to look at the here and now and the relationship you have with your present moments. With mindfulness practice, you’ll bring yourself back into the present moment. It will force you to look at it and recognize yourself in it.
Mindfulness practice is easier than you think. You don’t need to sit cross-legged on a cloud to reap its benefits. You just need to bring a quality of attention to whatever activity you are doing. You can meditate while enjoying your morning cup of coffee or tea. Mindfulness practice is as simple as recognizing the heat of your tea and reflecting on the warmth as it travels through your body. There is no stress in that cup of tea. It is simply a cup of a tea that you enjoy, and recognizing that simple fact is at the core of mindfulness practice.
Sometimes mindfulness can be hectic, like when you’re having a bad day and ugly emotions start rearing up inside you. This is normal! “We go through the waves of being human,” Dr. Itai says. And riding these waves is what makes us human. It’s being mindful of these waves, and understanding where the bad feelings are coming from, that is at the core of this practice. As you sip your warm tea on a bad day, you can reflect on how there is no negativity in the tea or in the moment of you drinking the tea. You aren’t avoiding the negative emotions. Rather, you’re reflecting on where they’re coming from and how they aren’t a permanent part of your being. It’s simply a wave you are riding.
Now, don’t panic. This isn’t about becoming a monk. Just because you practice mindfulness doesn’t mean you’ll get so Zen that you lose your edge. Don’t worry. Your passion isn’t going to go anywhere. You’ll just be able to stay calm under pressure and keep up the positive thinking so you’re not overwhelmed by the stress of everyday life. But in order to get all the benefits of mindfulness, you need to practice regularly. I personally set an alarm in my phone to remind me to take mindfulness breaks throughout my day. But a few days a week for a few months will be a good start for you, especially as you start on your One Year No Beer journey.
LINKS & RESOURCES
OYNB Website: https://www.oneyearnobeer.com/
OYNB Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/Oneyearnobeer/
OYNB Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/199505820380513/
OYNB Twitter: https://twitter.com/oynbuk/
OYNB Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/oneyearnobeer/
DR. ITAI IVTZAN'S RESOURCES
Dr. Itai’s Website: https://www.awarenessisfreedom.com/
Dr. Itai’s Online Course: Meditation Mindfulness Teacher Training
Dr. Itai’s Book: Mindfulness in Positive Psychology
Dr. Itai’s Twitter: @AwareisFree
Dr. Itai’s Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AwarenessisFreedom/