I've been "Knocked Around" by my mind a lot and I'm not alone. The average person has 60,000 thoughts per day and 80% of those thoughts are negative, according to the Cleveland Clinics study in 2017. That seems rather alarming, but have no fear because there is something you can do about it.
Here's my perspective of where these thougths come from and what I did to make peace with my thoughts and myself....
Like many of us, I have had abusive relationships in my past and spent years working on healing my trauma... many of those years were spent blaming others, which was a relevant part of my journey, but it also kept me stuck. The real change began when when I allowed myself to put the focus on me rather than the other: that meant that I had to acknowledge and feel the pain I was shoving down and find a way to release it. Once I did that I was able to take FULL OWNERSHIP OF MY LIFE AND MY EXPERIENCE - and that my friends is empowering.
You see, it wasn't the relationships that hurt me most. It is what I internatlized from those relationships and what I continued to "say" and "do" to myself after them.
It's so interesting h is helpful because memory gets stored in thervous system. When you are present in your body you will become familiar with where you hold tension and what "triggers" your nervous system to go into "high alert". When you know these things about yourself you can learn ways to work with the body to release tension and calm your nervous system. I talk about the nervous system a lot with my clients and in my workshops because it is such an important componenet of knowing self and finding inner peace. The two tools that I have found most helpful in regulating the nervous system (and in releasing stuck energy in the body) are
So how do we "let go" of those negative thoughts and let go of the "beating ourselves up" with the mind?
There are many action steps you can take: "affirmations" and shifting from "negative" to "positive" thinking can help - but I don't think it's a long term solution. Why? Because you just keep the battle of the mind never stops: "You aren't loveable, Yes you Are! NO you are not and I have proof - you haven't had a relationship in 2 years-that proves that you aren't loveable; that's not true, you are loveable, etc etc." These "mind battles" can go on forever.
SO WHAT DOES WORK to release the mind and make peace with yourself?
MEDITATION & WORKING with THE BODY (physical & energetic body)
MEDITATION because you learn to witness the thoughts and let them pass. During your meditation practice you may notice the desire to "grab onto" thoughts and follow them, but instead of doing that, you gently guide your mind back to the specific meditation technique. Over time the mind relaxes and peace emerges. The cool thing is that the ability to "let go" of unwanted thoughts transfers into your every day life as well! So, when a negative, self-sabotaging thought arises you are able to witness it, let it pass and re-focus your attention. And that my friends creates a life of less struggle and more ease.
Working with THE BODY is helpful because memory gets stored in the body & nervous system. When you are present in your body you will become familiar with where you hold tension and what "triggers" your nervous system to go into "high alert". When you know these things about yourself you can learn ways to work with the body to release tension and calm your nervous system. I talk about the nervous system a lot with my clients and in my workshops because it is such an important componenet of knowing self and finding inner peace. The two tools that I have found most helpful in regulating the nervous system (and int releasing stuck energy in the body) are breathwork and Kriya yoga. That is why I am so committed to teaching them.
To be clear ...
I do think it is important to have awareness of our patterns and to understand where they came from. And talking about your experience can help with that. I am a big believer in therapy because having a safe space to share and being heard is an important part of the healing process.
I also think it is important to do SOMATIC work and MIND work - working with our body and thoughts via meditation, breath and other yogic practices such as kriya.
If you want to learn to work with your mind, your nervous system or need support join me for....
Meditation Circles- begins April 13
Online Kriya Practices- begin April 18
Holistic Therapy Sessions - online or in person at my office in Folsom
Not sure what is right for you? Schedule a Free Online consultation
Sending love and see you soon!