1 Simple Trick to Instantly Quiet Your Mind
by Robin Sacks
I started meditating about two years ago.
While I could write an article about the unbelievable benefits I can now attest to as to how it can change your life, I won’t.
Instead, I want to share with you one awesome mental trick I created for myself based on a common meditation idea.
That common idea has to do with clouds. The concept is, as thoughts come into your head, to imagine them as clouds and watch them as they float by. In other words, tons of thoughts come into our heads every day. That’s called thinking. However, when you begin to hold on to some of those thoughts, especially ones that are stressful or anxiety inducing, they can quickly blow up into feeling like they are bigger problems then they really are.
If you laid your thoughts on a scale from 1 to 10, with 1 being calm and 10 being full of stress and anxiety, here’s how thoughts tend to play out: if a thought comes into your head as a “1,” and you let it back out of our head, it won’t feel much bigger than a “1.” But, if a thought comes into your head as a “1,” and you hold on to it, playing the thought over and over and over in your mind, it begins to feel like a “5.” If you keep doing that without either letting the thought pass or taking action on it, it will start to feel like a “10.”
Hence the cloud metaphor.
My tweak on this idea of how to purge those excess thoughts from my mind is to put them into a mental email inbox. I think of each thought as a single email in my mental inbox. That allows me to make decisions on what to do with each in a simple way. Here are my options:
- Take action on the email, and it is done
- Leave the email in my mental inbox to refer to or do something with later
- Store the information from that mental email somewhere outside of my head (i.e. a file folder, a to-do list, my calendar, etc.)
- Delete the MOFO!
My discovery with this technique is that the vast majority of my daily thoughts can be best dealt with by choosing number four. Most of the chatter in our heads is just worthless noise. It not only serves no purpose, but it gets in the way of our ability to think about things that actually matter in our lives.
What adds to the effectiveness of “hitting the delete button” on my thoughts is that I also make that “fwhooosshh” sound that your device makes when it “sends” a real email. Yes, I actually make the sound when I delete a thought! :)
Give this technique a try; it’s not only silly and fun, but it’s super effective. It is so easy to clutter our minds with too many thoughts that really don’t help us in any way. By making intentional decisions as to how you are going to deal with your thoughts, you put yourself in control. When we feel more in control, our confidence level rises and our stress level plummets.
Bye for now…“fwhooosshh.”