According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, the word “mindfulness” can be defined as, more or less, being aware of your own thoughts, emotions, and experiences on a moment-to-moment scale or basis. In other words, being mindful in thinking enables a person to think about and observe how certain thoughts and experiences affects how they behave and what they can do to feel better about anything that bothers them. The more mindful a person becomes in their thinking, the easier it becomes to cope with and handle themselves.
In my experiences, I’ve noticed how many people don’t actually participate in mindful thinking. When someone is upset or angry from anything that bothers them, reactions vary from person to person. The initial common reaction, however, tends to lean towards being extremely upset about something and maybe even temporarily shutting it out to focus on other things. Others who might have a hard time dealing with emotions in the first place might completely shut down and find it hard to actually find a solution. This, of course, is definitely not a healthy way of dealing with any sort of problem, whether it be intrusive thoughts or a situation that causes you to get upset with yourself or someone else. Even I admit, I am guilty of practicing unhealthy ways of coping with my emotions towards certain situations as I unintentionally gravitate towards this unhealthy way of dealing with my emotions due to the sole fact that I can’t cope at all sometimes.
So what’s the best way to react when you don’t want to think about how bad it can feel? How can we, as individuals, aim towards a better way of thinking so that we can also help those around us as well as ourselves with the methods of mindful thinking? The answer isn’t as hard as it might seem to be and can even be conveyed in such a way where even a child can understand how to cope with situations that can cause pain.
In a recent episode of “Steven Universe” (and yes, I am somehow finding myself writing about this show again), Steven and another character, Connie, work together in figuring out how to cope with the problems that are bothering them. These thoughts keep making their fusion Stevonnie fall apart easily because of how troubled they both are. In the best way possible, this episode, like many other episodes in this TV show’s past, was able to portray how to stay mindful about the thoughts and emotions that plagues each character’s mind through song. This song, while being a super catchy tune, highlights some of the most important aspects of mindful thinking that it made me pretty darn emotional just thinking about my own problems and insecurities. Here is the song in question:
From just the song and visuals alone, it is really easy to see how much of an impact the lyrics have on the premise of mindful thinking. As Garnet sings to Stevonnie, little white butterflies appear, eventually surrounding the characters. It can easily be interpreted that these individual butterflies represent the thoughts that plague each character's minds based on past experiences they might be trying to suppress, which is the perfect way to portray them.
Garnet ultimately shows how in order for you to not feel bad about a thought, the best way to cope is to think about how bad it hurts from just one thought. Eventually, after acknowledging your feelings and even what you might have done to someone or something, the next step is to realize that your situation and things in the present moment might seem scary now, but you are definitely going to be okay. It's also really important to acknowledge the positive aspect of loved ones helping and being a part of recovery. As bad as something may seem, you're definitely not alone and even if it might look like a situation or problem is going to break a relationship with someone you know, it's not going to happen. It's best to look and realize that no, this situation is not going to tear away a relationship and they're here with you too.
With the way this episode conveyed mindfulness in such a simple way, it's even got me thinking about how I can utilize this method of staying in the present moment as a way to help me cope with my own emotions. Instead of thinking and picking at every little thing that bothers me, this song has got me viewing my problems in such a way where I can think to myself, "It's going to be okay because I'm here."
Though this way of thinking might seem a little overwhelming at first because you're quite literally hitting the core of your thoughts or problems, but rest assured there is nothing to worry about because here you are in the present moment and you're doing amazing.
You are living, you are here, and you've got nothing to fear.