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Elisa Goldstein, Ph.D.Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D.
A blog about mindfulness, stress-reduction, psychotherapy and mental health.

The Mindful Freudian Slip

Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D. Updated: Oct 20th 2011

freudWe’re all happy to be in the present moment when it’s pleasant. In fact, it can be easy to make a Freudian slip saying “I want to be in the pleasant moment.” When things get unpleasant that’s when we’d rather be anywhere else but here. From an evolutionary perspective, this is a natural reaction of the mind. Stay away from pain and move toward comfort. Check to see if you have this Freudian slip within you.

  • At work, are you focused when things are going well and check out with the phone, unimportant emails, or Facebook when things get overwhelming? 

  • In your relationships are you engaged during the happy times and become disconnected or shut down during the difficult time?

  • Or in class, a seminar or workshop are you present when interested and then if boredom comes over, does your mind start daydreaming? 

There are all kinds of ways we automatically check out when things get unpleasant, why? Because we’d rather be anywhere but here when things aren’t pleasant. 

However, this sends the message internally that all parts of ourselves are not welcome so we inevitably become disconnected inside, which leads to imbalance, and then dis-ease. 

So, here’s your challenge for today:

Be on the lookout for unpleasant events. When you find one, ask yourself 4 questions:

  1. How is my body feeling right now?

  2. What emotions are present?

  3. What thoughts are on my mind?

  4. How is it for me to be reflecting on this right now? 

These are all questions to guide you to be here and connect with this life as it is. Connection leads to balance and then to health. Even in the unpleasant moments (as long as it’s not a trauma reaction), connection sends the message internally that all parts of ourselves are accepted, which then leads to a sense of self-acceptance. 

The practice above is just a simple, short practice to begin weaving into your life. You can also do it with the pleasant moments.

Try it out today.

As always, please share your thoughts, stories and questions below. Your interaction creates a living wisdom for us all to benefit from



Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D.

Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist in private practice in West Los Angeles and is author of the upcoming book The Now Effect, co-author of A Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Workbook, Foreword by Jon Kabat-Zinn, author of the Mindful Solutions audio series, and the Mindfulness at Work program currently being adopted in multiple multinational corporations.

Check out Dr. Goldstein's acclaimed CD's on Mindful Solutions for Stress, Anxiety, and Depression, Mindful Solutions for Addiction and RelapsePrevention, and Mindful Solutions for Success and Stress Reduction at Work. -- "They are so relevant, I have marked them as one of my favorites on a handout I give to all new clients" ~ Psychiatrist.

If you're wanting to integrate more mindfulness into your daily life, sign up for his Mindful Living Twitter Feed. Dr. Goldstein is also available for private psychotherapy.

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