Have you ever been so deep in thought that you end up completely forgetting what you were just thinking about? Then, in an attempt to remember what you were pondering over, you try to backtrack your way through the web of thoughts to come back to your original idea?
For the average person, our mind (a lot of the time subconsciously) rules our day. It’s an everlasting machine being run 24/7, a thought producing engine without an OFF switch.
It’s said (from the internet, so take it with a grain of salt) that we have up to 50,000 thoughts per day. FIFTY THOUSAND. From that amount, an overly large percentage are said to be the same thoughts as we had the day before.
Why are we thinking so much, and better yet, why so quickly?
Over the years I’ve dabbled into mindfulness meditation, which is pretty much defined as a process of being consciously aware of the experiences occurring within the present moment.
Meditation is a technique that can take a lifetime to really master (maybe a few lifetimes!). What I’ve learned and discovered through this mental state (and I’m by no means an expert) is that your inner self can take a step back from your mind and watch your chain of thoughts come and go as they please without any judgement.
It’s sad to think, but most people don’t ever take the time to sit back and realize their thought processes.
They go about their day thinking and reacting to the beat of how their mind decides to play it’s own drum.
They don’t realize that they themselves are actually totally separate from their own mind.
They allow their mind to be in control, rather than being in control of their mind.
The brain is a fascinating thing when you really think about it, and in a way it’s almost impossible to wrap our heads around It (no pun intended!).
But all kidding aside, what if I told you that you could take control of your thoughts and reactions and slow down the number of thoughts (mostly repeated thoughts) that your mind machine produces on a daily basis?
How much calmer and more relaxed do you think your day would be if you were able to cut the amount of thoughts you have each day in half, or be able to not react as strongly and emotional to certain situations as they arise out of the blue?
The concept and strategy is quite simple.
1 – The next time you feel like your thoughts are racing through your head in high gear, notice the way your body feels. More likely than not, you’re tense. Relax your facial expressions and your shoulders (how you feel externally can really help to match how you feel internally). Maybe even put on a smile.
2 – Take a few deep breaths, breathing in through your nose and out through your mouth.
3 – Now try to sit back (inside your own head) and watch your thoughts flow, just how you’d watch waves at the beach rise and fall. Don’t judge them or be hard on yourself, just let them be and exist.
4 – Repeat this process each and every time you feel overwhelmed or strong emotions come about.
Over time, if practiced diligently, you will start to recognize your own thinking patterns, as well as pinpoint what events trigger certain reactions. You’ll begin to tap into the methods of how your mind machine operates and slowly be able to take over the reins of how you think and react to all situations.
With these few basic strategies in your arsenal, you’ll be able to take control of your mind and direct it to do as you say so, not the other way around.
“A mind that is fast is sick. A mind that is slow is sound. A mind that is still is divine.” – Meher Baba