I heard this current colloquialism the other day and although I’d heard it (and used it) many times before it suddenly struck me as a very important question to ask ourselves. Of course, we are all well aware that we have a continuous stream of thoughts coursing through our minds 24/7, but how often do we realize that we are the thinker?
More often than not, we tend to attribute our thinking to outside events. We imagine that the rude person that cut us off in the parking lot caused our anger or the lost cellphone made us anxious. We even imagine that the wait in the doctor’s office made us impatient or the power failure made us frustrated.
We do, absolutely, have a wide range of thinking. Our minds can, quickly, jump from happy to sad, from self-assured to fearful. But are we the victims of random events? Are we at the mercy of a fickle, thought-producing mass of tissue called a brain? Or are we the blessed recipients of a profound connection to the force behind all life and, as such, the carriers of a wellspring of wisdom and common sense? Can we choose? Absolutely!
Once we recognize our part in the creation of our experience we are free to choose a lighter, sweeter response to the events of life. We can see that the rude driver is really just a regular fellow who lost his bearings and was distracted. We can see that we are more likely to find a lost cellphone if we are calm rather than anxious. We can appreciate a few extra moments in the doctor’s office to read our book or check our to-do list. When the power fails we can light a fire and some candles and tell stories or even read by flashlight, feeling gratitude for living with electricity most of the time.
Now those are only a few of the options available to us, but the point is that we can create a different experience. We can choose not to be gripped by low mood thinking. We can instead open ourselves to the enormous possibilities offered by our innate health.
Certainly there are life events that seem to challenge our resiliency. The truth, however, is that we are up for the challenge. Even in the face of years of habitual negativity, whether it is worry or anger or anxiety, we can still access the profound intelligence that is our birthright. It is just a thought away.
And so, armed with faith in our innate resiliency, surely our choice would be to let go of thinking that lowers our mood and opt for thinking that taps into our wisdom and common sense. Surely our choice would be to create an experience of compassion and forgiveness.
Do you think?