I find most people will simply not monitor their thought processes. It’s as if they allow the thought process to deal out to them anything the thoughts want without realizing that the thought process itself is the direct extension of their own will.
Thoughts are energy being transmitted through your nervous system unimpaired and unhampered. Gregge Tiffen (Open Secrets: One Original Thought, September, 2011)
To Gregge’s first comment above, I plead ‘guilty as charged’. The evidence, as suggested in the second quote can be found in my physical body in the form of effects caused by rampaging thoughts going where they go until I step up and impose my will. The opportunity is to observe, experiment, practice using the free will that was gifted me by the universe.
I’m discovering that observing my thoughts with the awareness that I have the authority and the responsibility to manage them to my benefit is a full time job. This is especially true when I’m in the midst of a challenging situation where thoughts about ‘it’ and ‘them’ rush in and reinforce the illusion that we are separate from one another.
I’ve had lots of practice opportunities over the last couple weeks as I aim to glean all the learning that I can from the events. I’m challenging myself to not dwell in the stories or even in what I see as the solutions, but to be at choice about what thoughts have my attention. Required ingredients: awareness, discipline, will.
Awareness requires that I observe where my thoughts are dwelling in every moment and remember that I am the director of my thoughts (cool new title eh? Director of My Thoughts!). Discipline asks me to be consistent in my awareness and to practice, practice, and, yes, rinse, repeat and practice again. Will demands that I live into the power of being the director of my thoughts and that I deny access to wasteful, energy draining, disempowering ones and choose to bring forward thoughts that are productive, generative and empowering.
The reminder that ‘thoughts are energy being transmitted through the nervous system’ asks that the Director of My Thoughts observe my physical well-being and respond by giving it the care and protection it requires. My body signals with tightness in my chest, tension in my neck and shoulders, and, on occasion, a rumbly tummy. Luke’s interaction with me offers a gauge to how my thoughts are moving into the environment.
I can use these signals as warning signs that suggest ‘Thoughts off-track. Reboot with new ones please’. And, I know that nature and my five senses provide a path to that reboot, to restoring me so that I can engage different, fresh thoughts.
I breathe. I see and I invite the visual beauty of the landscape where I live to sink deeply into my cells.
I breathe. I hug a tree and I invite the strength that I feel to nurture me. I breathe. I hear the soft gurgling of a nearby creek and I invite it to carry away those thoughts that don’t serve me. I breathe. I smell the freshness of a gentle rain and I am simply grateful. I breathe. I taste the sweetness of a tomato just picked from the vine and I know that I am nourished. I breathe.
I notice my thoughts and am ready to engage anew. What about you?