One thing that may help to reduce stress is to try being the witness of your mind. Be the one to use your thoughts, rather than allowing your thoughts to subtly use you and well as dictate your mood. Eckhart Tolle writes, “The moment you start watching your thoughts, a higher level of consciousness becomes activated.” Here is a quote from his book “Practicing the Power of Now”:
“The single most vital step on your journey toward enlightenment is this: Learn to disidentify from your mind. Every time you create a gap in the stream of mind, the light of your consciousness grows stronger. One day you may catch yourself smiling at the voice in your head (from past conditioning) as you would smile at the antics of a child. This means that you no longer take the content of your mind all that seriously, as your sense of self does not depend on it.”
Imagine yourself to be the sun, unaffected by the racing clouds of thoughts that come and go passing beneath it. Or think of yourself as the screen upon which all thoughts and opinions, etc. come and go. Throughout our life there has a continual stream of ever-changing thoughts and moods. But what is the one thing that remains the same in this world of impermanence? The part of you that can observe a passing feeling or thought. The “I” that can say, “I’m feeling sad,” while the next day say, “I’m now feeling happy.”
It’s a very subtle yet profound process, which can help one move toward a sense of freedom.