It’s in the thinking. We get what we get in our lives because of our thinking. Sounds simple but not so easy to change if we don’t like what we’re seeing. Sometimes it feels more like our thoughts are thinking us than we’re thinking them.
When I wake up in the morning, my mind goes to town! “You’re awake! WooHoo! Now let’s get to the business of how you’re feeling and what we think you should be doing today and my ideas about everyone you know, dead or alive.”
“What day is it? What should we worry about? What’s on the docket? Maybe we should sleep a little longer. Do you really need to go hiking? Didn’t you just go yesterday? Go take your vitamins. You’re tired. There’s bacon in the fridge! Shall we wrestle internally about whether you should eat some or not?” . . . . blah, blah, blah.
WHO THE HECK IS THIS BROAD AND WHY WON’T SHE LEAVE ME ALONE??!!
What do you do about the crazy person who lives in your head and tries to sabotage all that visualizing and positivity you’re trying to pull off? How do you shut her up when you’re trying to stay focused on the things you want instead of the things that are in your face, making you anxious and begging for your attention?
Here are 3 ways to help you manage the voice . . .
Become aware of the thoughts you habitually think and question them.
What are the negative thoughts you habitually think? When you’re triggered and those anxious, sometimes destructive, thoughts begin to show up, stop and ask yourself where you are and what you’re feeling.
Are you in the past? Are you in the future? Are the thoughts your voice? Are they the voice of a parent? A bully? Are you defensive? Are you sad? Are you worried? Do you feel guilty? Are the thoughts even true in this moment? Become fully aware of what’s happening in your body and why.
We have so many thoughts all day long and we rarely stop to question their validity. Our minds play the same “tunes” over and over again simply because they’re stuck in familiar grooves. By becoming consciously aware of our patterns, we can begin to change them and create new grooves that are more positive.
We can’t modify anything we’re blindly doing. We have to bring it to the light and then we can question and change it.
Interrupt the negative thoughts.
The teachings of Abraham-Hicks say that if you hold a thought for 17 seconds, it reaches a point of combustion and becomes a powerful point of attraction. If you continue to hold it for another 17 seconds and another 17 seconds, etc., it will pick up speed . . . So, if your thoughts follow this rule of physics, a negative thought will get hella bigger if you allow it to stick around too long, AND it will begin creating things in your life that won’t feel very good to you! If you put the brakes on and stop yourself from complaining, b*tching, worrying and agonizing before the 17 second mark, you interrupt the thought and stop the downhill momentum.
Do something to bring yourself back to the present moment. Take a deep breath in and count to 5, hold it for 5 and release for 5. Repeat. Keep your mind on your breath only and stay present . . . Or look around and see what there is to be grateful for in that red hot second. Are you in a comfortable home? Is there something beautiful in your environment? Are there kids laughing and playing nearby? Feel the relief of that.
Find any way you can to give the present moment your full attention so the negative thought gets interrupted and loses its energy.
Don’t engage or try to resist. Let the thoughts pass by.
When Mini-Me is running one of her rants, I don’t engage. I let her argue about not going hiking while I’m putting on my hiking shoes. I let her tell me to go straight to the coffee and skip my morning water and vitamins while I’m drinking the water and taking the vitamins. I let her debate about all the other things I could be doing instead of driving to the trails, while I’m listening to music and driving to the trails. I don’t let her talk me out of what I’ve chosen to put my attention on.
When we listen to those unhelpful thoughts and focus on them, we begin to believe what they’re telling us. We think the voice is ours and then we become attached to what it’s saying. We have to understand that who we are is not the narrative in our heads. We are the observers.
We don’t have to push the “bad thoughts” away. We can “hear” them without listening. Let them pass by like a parade of noisy hecklers and get on with it.
We all have days when we feel like we can’t stop ourselves from engaging in head to head battle with the lunatic in our minds. She has excel sheets filled with justifications. She knows our insecurities, fears, hopes and dreams and runs a constant narrative to make her points!
We have to learn to work with, not against that voice and retrain ourselves to create new habits and “grooves” that serve us better. It doesn’t happen overnight but the more we become mindful of the thoughts we’re thinking and why we’re thinking them, the more we can release the negative patterns and change our defaults. It’s all about awareness.
There’s no going back when you know what you know! Knowledge of self is power and with that comes progress!