This is a powerful tool in mindfulness that helps us to manage awareness, acceptance, and most of all stress.
SOAL is a short abbreviation to easy remember and use with effectiveness this tool anytime, anywhere.
SOAL stands for:
Stop! (Sit or stand still)
With the help of a deep breath we take command of a reaction. Our brain becomes busy performing the two-step process of this deep breath with a slow inhalation and a slow exhalation but we bring stillness and calmness to become aware of our PRESENT MOMENT.
Be aware of what is going on in you. What do you feel? Is there any kind of body tension, strong emotions, or stressful thoughts in relationship to what is going on NOW? Is there any thought regarding any consequences this situation may lead to? Just be conscious of the information you get. Don´t put any judge on this. Be objective.
This situation is as it is. We can´t change it. We are not probably ok with this, but we acknowledge that things are as they are without any judgement.
The Serenity Prayer written by the American theologian Reinhold Niebuhr enhances the concept of acceptance in these few verses:
“grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
courage to change the things I can,
and wisdom to know the difference”
This is the step where you find the awareness in the situation. Without any judgement you understand that it is the moment to let go, for example worries of future situations that are not happening and are creating your anxiety, probably the perception of loss, etc.
This is also the step where we can take with us the insight to grow and evolve.
Practice SOAL any time you feel stressed, you find the need to accept situations, overcome fear or even when searching for self-acceptance or awareness.
To keep yourself reminded on this powerful tool, you can have a card with the SOAL abbreviation that you can have with you everywhere and once you create the habit of using this tool, you will find out the fantastic benefits you bring to your life in terms of sustainable and healthy well-being.