CLL patients are often faced with difficult decisions throughout their cancer journey. Using the mindfulness technique Wise Mind can help patients make decisions that feel right both logically and emotionally.
Wise Mind - Balancing Emotion and Reason in Decision Making
Wise Mind is a mindfulness technique that originates from Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), a type of therapy developed by psychologist Marsha M. Linehan. DBT combines cognitive-behavioral techniques with concepts from Eastern meditation practices. Wise Mind is about finding a balance between two aspects of our minds: the "reasonable mind" and the "emotional mind."
The "reasonable mind" is logical and factual. It's the part of us that thinks rationally, plans, and evaluates based on facts. It's where we use our knowledge and intellect to make decisions. On the other hand, the "emotional mind" is where our feelings and emotions live. It's impulsive and powerful. Our emotional mind guides us through our feelings, which can be very intense and overwhelming at times.
Wise Mind is the intersection of these two. It's like a bridge that connects rational thinking with emotional understanding. It's where we find our inner wisdom, a deep, intuitive understanding that incorporates both our rational thoughts and our emotional experiences. When we're in Wise Mind, we make decisions that feel right both logically and emotionally.
To understand Wise Mind better, let's consider an example. Imagine you're facing a tough decision about which cancer treatment to choose. Your reasonable mind might weigh the pros and cons based on potential benefits and side effects. Your emotional mind, meanwhile, might feel excited about the outcomes or fearful of something going wrong. Wise Mind would involve acknowledging both these perspectives and then making a decision that feels balanced and true to your whole self.
But how do you access your Wise Mind? It starts with mindfulness – the practice of being fully present and aware of where we are and what we're doing, without being overly reactive or overwhelmed by what's going on around us. Mindfulness helps us to tune into our Wise Mind by creating a space where we can listen to both our reason and our emotions without letting either dominate.
Tapping into Wise Mind with Meditation
One way to tap into your Wise Mind is through meditation. Sitting quietly, focusing on your breath, and observing your thoughts and feelings without judgment can help you find that inner wisdom. It's about acknowledging your rational thoughts and emotional responses and then letting them converge to guide you toward wise decisions.
Using Wise Mind in everyday life can lead to more balanced, thoughtful responses to situations. It can help with managing stress, improving relationships, and making better decisions. For example, when you're in a conflict, instead of reacting impulsively (emotional mind) or disengaging entirely (reasonable mind), Wise Mind encourages a response that considers both the feelings involved and the logical aspects of the situation.
In conclusion, Wise Mind is a valuable tool in the mindfulness toolkit. It represents a balanced way of thinking and feeling, where both logic and emotion are acknowledged and used to guide decision-making. By practicing mindfulness and learning to access our Wise Mind, we can navigate life’s complexities with a clearer, more balanced perspective. This technique is not just about making better decisions; it's about leading a more harmonious and conscious life.
about the author
Megan joined HealthTree in 2022. As a writer and the daughter of a blood cancer patient, she is dedicated to helping patients and their caregivers understand the various aspects of their disease. This understanding enables them to better advocate for themselves and improve their treatment outcomes. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family, sewing, and cooking.