The mind that believes the thoughts is the same mind that thinks...
Do you see the paradox?
It’s good to be reminded not to believe all of our thoughts but as the mind that evaluates one’s thoughts is the same mind that thinks them, there’s an apparent difficulty here…
How to stop believing in your thoughts if you CAN'T USE THE MIND to do so?
By creating a space between YOU and YOUR THOUGHTS by increasing your awareness.
There are several ways that lead to releasing the grip of the mind, and scientists have found evidence that meditation, the most commonly used practice to do this, has been practiced for at least 10 000 years (!!!) For something to have lasted for that long, there must be a real value to it…
Here are a couple of ways to create a gap between you and your mind - what suits you best?
OBSERVATION OF THOUGHTS. Start a regular and consistent meditation practice where you learn to OBSERVE your thoughts by abiding as the witness. Please note! Any objections you have against starting this routine come from your mind, the very thing we’re trying to conquer… Don’t listen.
JOURNALING. Start journaling on a consistent basis. This will help you recognize your patterns of thinking. Pay attention, what is the pattern in your reoccurring thoughts and interpretations?
MENTORS & ROLE MODELS. Spend time with people accomplished in this area. Please be aware that you will only be able to recognize clarity that already exists within you (!) Have discernment but keep an open mind. Those new to this tend to appreciate the teachings of Eckhart Tolle.
THE COMPANY YOU KEEP. It’s said that we are an average of the 5 people we spend the most time with, mentally as well as in person. Other people do affect our thinking! Find people whom you consider to be open-minded, positive, and opportunity-focused for inspiration and upliftment! Observe and notice how they tend to view different situations. What can you learn and how can you apply it?
BALANCE YOUR NERVOUS SYSTEM. Activate your nervous system and the relaxation response through yoga and qigong! All exercise is good but these practices are specifically designed for the nervous system which makes them extra powerful. (Ps. It is very interesting to notice how the quality of one's thoughts changes when the body is in a harmonious state…)
PROFESSIONAL ASSISTANCE. Explore how your current thinking is potentially getting in your way by going to therapy or coaching. Therapy is the choice if you know you have many things from the past to process, coaching is the choice if you are curious about how your current thinking is preventing you from moving FORWARD.
With those different ways outlined, I don't mean to say that one automatically stops believing in all one's unuseful thoughts overnight. Most often, it will take some time and include hard work. Then all of a sudden, you will look back at what you wrote in your journal and discover that you really don't believe that anymore or you'll notice that you have more distance to your thoughts in daily life and are freer to respond rather than to react. How free are you currently?
Test by taking the ELI Assessment, an online-based test measuring your “mindset” and how that is influencing you and your actions, both under stress and under normal conditions. The test takes about 20 min to complete online and is followed up by a debrief session. Book here.
Ps. For companies, there is also the possibility of taking the ELI 360. That test reveals differences in how you perceive your mindset and how others perceive it and what consequences that has on the energy, cooperation, and output of the team… What might be the potential benefit of discovering the root of those perceived differences? Do you have another favorite way of getting out of the grip of the mind? Please share!