How to use Mantras to Transform your Thoughts and Life

Have you ever had a day/moment/ lifetime where you have had so many thoughts you don’t even know where to start? You wake up with a powerful river of thoughts crashing into your mind at once. How do we get those to slow down? How do we turn that river into a steady stream? Mantras are one way to slow those thoughts down.

What is a mantra, you ask?

Mantras are words or phrases that you can say repeatedly to yourself, silently or out loud while breathing. They are used to calm down your thoughts and to replace some of those less helpful thoughts we all have. You can repeat these mantras anywhere from a minute to hours. All you need is a quiet space to do this.

The word mantra is from two Sanskrit words: “manas,” which means mind, and “tra” means tool. This translates to a tool for the mind. Whoa!

Many mantras have their roots in spiritual texts however; this is not a necessary component of mantras if you do not want it to be. For example, a mantra for Christians may be a word or a phrase from the Bible, such as “Jesus. For individuals who take a yogic perspective, they may practice, “Om.” Whatever you choose must resonate with YOU, whether it has its roots in religion, spirituality, or not.

How do I “do” a mantra?

Find a comfortable seat or lay down.

Close your eyes.

Inhale, say your mantra.

Exhale, say your mantra.

Mantras can be said silently or out loud. You may choose to begin a consistent mantra practice by setting aside five minutes each day to practice your mantra or you may choose to use them when you need them.

Who uses mantras?

Anyone can use these; kids, tweens, teens, and adults!

Say your five-year-old is struggling with going to school for the first time. Encourage her to utilize a mantra. You could even say it with her! It is best to keep it very simple, especially at first. For example, “I am safe. I can do this! “ Repeat this with her. On an inhale, say, “I am safe. I can do this!” On the exhale, say, “I am safe. I can do this!” Repeat this for one minute with her. Encourage her to come back to this mantra throughout the day.

Teens can use these too. Maybe your teen is worried about a big test they have coming up, encourage him to utilize a mantra. For example, “I am capable. I am prepared.” Encourage him to say this first thing in the morning for a couple of minutes and throughout the day before the test.  

Adults can use these too.  Life comes with many ups and downs. Some days are harder than others. A helpful mantra for adults may be, ”I trust my path.” When seeking to be more compassionate or loving, you may use, “I am love. I am compassion.” On days when you feel like you are stretched too thin; kids, partner, animals, practice, work, meals, the list goes on and on! A mantra to try may be, “I am enough.”

There are so many options for mantras! Choose a mantra that works for you and watch it create more joy and peace in your mind.  

Want some help writing a mantra that works for you? Reach out to us to create your mantra! 

We can help you personalize your mantra (you know, to make it SUPER powerful).

About Marissa Wilson

Marissa Caton (Wilson), LMSW, is the co-owner of Lifeologie Counseling Grand Rapids Cascade. She studied social work at Grand Valley State University and is an experienced therapist as well as a trained yoga teacher and lifelong yoga practitioner. She is trained in play therapy, yoga therapy, and Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. She specializes in working with children ages 9-18 who are experiencing anxiety, depression, stress management, life changes, trauma, and PTSD. Her counseling approach includes talk therapy and body-focused approaches, including psychotherapeutic yoga. She sees tweens, teens, and families at Lifeologie Counseling Grand Rapids Ada and Lifeologie Counseling Grand Rapids Cascade.

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