Question

Can you please talk about restlessness, fidgeting and other seemingly uncontrollable-at-times body movements? What are some methods of working with them?

Answer

The best method that I know for being aware of bodily movements is mindfulness of the body. Increasing our mindfulness of the body throughout the day, especially of our hands, is very helpful, because sometimes restlessness manifests in our hands as fidgeting. I remember one time it became one of my mindfulness activities to try to keep my hands as still as possible, to be aware of them. In one of the mindfulness activities in the 20-day retreats, we try to be aware of our hands, because a lot of our fidgeting involves our hands. Trying to keep them still, trying to stand still when you're standing, trying to sit still when you're sitting -- being aware of the bodily postures as much as we can is very helpful. It's also helpful to actually investigate whether the restlessness is desire, and note our desire more clearly.

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