Why do I get stressed when my stepmom makes me do a 'mindfulness stress relief exercise'?
First apologies for the long message, but here goes…My dad got married last year with this woman who is his former secretary and only 23 (so 19 yrs younger than him and 7 yrs older than me) and who in spite of being almost same age as me always bosses me around and lectures me like she would be some super-old and wise woman which she is clearly not.
Anyways, she is very much into fitness and eating healthy (which is fine) but also into yoga and reading all sorts of stupid motivational books such as ‘the power of now’ which she forced me to read even though I didn’t want to, would quiz me on it and heaven forbid I got any of the quizzes wrong…This book was written by a guy named Eckhart Tolle who seems to have made some really nice $$ by telling people not to care about material things :)
Now her latest interest is this so called ‘mindfulness stress relief cognitive therapy’ which is a fancy name for having to sit still in a position which should not be too comfortable (so that you don’t fall asleep) and stare at a fixed point while, and I quote, ‘focusing on the present moment, not judging any feelings you have as good or bad, not analysing the cause of your feelings and not trying to change these feelings in any way’ (and some more blah blah). The logic behind it is that not analysing anything is supposed to send raw body input to your right side of the brain which will adjust your body parameters so you are healthier, have lower stress hormones levels and are better able to withstand pain or other negative sensations such as feeling hungry (if you analyse the feelings it all supposedly goes to your left brain which is in charge of logical thought and less able to regulate body functions).
So what all this means to me is that now I have to wake up every morning at exactly 06:15am, immediately get off my bed, kneel on my heels japanese style near the bed with my palms flat on my knees and my eyes fixed on a dot on the wall and stay like that for the next 30 mins while having to repeat out loud ‘God is protecting me’ for the entire period and focus on the present moment as described above. Then the whole thing repeats for another 30 mins before going to bed.
For now the only ‘benefits’ I feel from this therapy which she’s been making me do for more than a week are that my legs hurt and go numb from the kneeling, my back hurts from the sitting still position, my head hurts from having to stare at the stupid point on the wall, and my stress level is increased by getting really mad at her for making me do this and at my dad for being so head over heels with her that everything she does is always right and perfect.
Do you think I’m completely ignorant or do you agree that this is a completely dumb and idiotic exercise which I suspect she makes me do as revenge for doing everything to try to convince my dad not to marry her?
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