The tools in this post are all about your wonderful mind.
Tool 11 – Inner chatter – mind full or mindful?
We all have an ‘inner voice’, the voice of our wonderful mind. The mind likes to jump from one thought to another creating numerous internal conversations. We may be aware of our inner thinking processes or these thinking processes may be out of awareness.
If the inner voice is out of our conscious awareness, we can easily become swept up into a whirlwind of thoughts (who said what, and who did what, what is bad, what is good etc.) and this can impact our emotions (fear, anger, excitement, sadness, disappointment etc.). We may connect (usually unconsciously) these thoughts and feelings to memories of similar experiences in the past and/or to our fears and hopes for the future (what if this happens?). Consequently, all connection to the ‘present moment’ is lost. Being enmeshed in such thoughts is an act of the ego and blocks the connection to the higher aspect of self, the observer.
The ‘here and now’ (present moment) is always the point and place of power. Developing a conscious awareness of your wonderful mind is the first step towards harnessing a very potent inner power. It is worth taking time to explore and get to know your own mind.
Our thoughts affect the quality of our experience and the quality of our life and well-being. Get to know your wonderful mind because you are worth it!
This activity will help you to start getting to know your mind.
- Stop what you are doing, sit comfortably and take a few deep abdominal breaths.
- Spend one minute just taking notice of all the thoughts that pass through your mind. (If you think: ‘I am not thinking anything, or this is stupid’, then these are thoughts, notice them!).
- Just take the time to notice each thought as it passes through (e.g. I am hungry; this is stupid; I love this; I hate this).
- Notice if you get stuck on a certain thought or if a specific thought keeps popping back into your head.
- Let go of any judgement about the thoughts and just notice them.
- At the end of the minute, you may want to write down some of the thoughts you remember in your journal, just as a way of developing awareness.
- You can read back over your list of thoughts and consider, if you can think this number of thoughts in one minute; imagine how many thoughts you may have over the course of one hour, one day, one week, one month, on year, one lifetime etc!
Tool 12 – Self-talk
Our thoughts pass through our minds so quickly, it is no wonder that most self-talk is outside of our awareness. The way we think makes a huge difference to how we experience life, it acts like a self-fulfilling prophecy: if we see something as ‘wonderful’, that experience builds, if we see something as ‘awful’. that experience builds.
If we can catch our thoughts before we create a whole story, we have developed some mastery over our mind.
What do you think about yourself?
- If you pass a mirror – what do you see and what do you say when you see yourself?
- If you drop something – what do you think, what do you say to yourself?
- Are your thoughts kind and progressive/positive (e.g., I look lovely) or are they devaluing and unhelpful/negative (e.g., I am so stupid, I’m too fat etc.)
Being aware of how your mind works and learning to speak kindlier to your self are keys to becoming your own best friend. You may shrug off and choose not to believe any kind thoughts and words at first, but keep saying kind and helpful words anyway and you will start to believe them – ‘fake it till you make it’
Answer this question – What do you think about yourself? (you could use this as a journal task). Let go of any judgement about any of the thoughts that arise, just be aware of them. And remember, they are only thoughts and thoughts can be changed. The power is yours. As i said at the start, the first step is awareness.