Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Training My Mind

Al Anon, Self Help, Mind Training

I have always been a firm believer that I can just about anything if I train my mind. Yes - train.

Think about that for a minute. Usually when I read words like this - I say, "Yes, of course. I can train my mind." Maybe you do to. Think about this a little differently today. And I hope by using this analogy, I will help you.

Think of a puppy. Yep. A dog. Think about this puppy yipping, running a little wild, and - I'm sorry - but here it comes - peeing all around your house. Yep. Peeing. Going to the bathroom. All over.

Well - that is your mind. Running around, yipping and peeing (or worse - but let's not get vulgar) all around your house - er, your mind. Now sometimes this little mind of yours (ours/mine) is very playful and I believe that's okay, but it would be better if you could control your mind to be playful WHEN you wish it to play - not at random.

I read - somewhere - that "The mind is a great servant, but horrible master." Think and reflect on this statement.

A great servant. You mean, it is my servant? It does not order me around? Yep. That's right. But we've never been taught that it is our servant. We've been taught - maybe not directly - that the mind is in control. Well, that maybe partially true. But there is a big part of our mind that runs rampant, out of control. But there is another part, that wants to control that part of our mind - or should I say - CAN control. We just have to make it a habit - to control and eliminate this crazy thinking, random thought process.

This crazy part of our minds, worries, conjures up fears, and worse, plays these out in our minds. I am sitting in a hotel now, but there is some quote from I think it was Mark Twain, that talks about 90 percent of my fears never occurred.

I found this one from Mr. Twain;
Drag your thoughts away from your troubles... by the ears, by the heels, or any other way you can manage it. ~Mark Twain

Anyway - how do you stop fear and worry?

Answer? Easy - look for the initial signs as the thought enters your mind. And then - recognize it (Awareness) - and - eliminate it through self-talk. Say "Stop. You are not going to enter my mind." And then laugh at it. And say, "There you are!" Making it a joke or laughing, and doing this one little thing - as a habit - can help you recognize this coming in. Seeing - visualizing - this part of your mind - the voice coming in from someone you don't care for - and visualizing their face and then taking a Sharpie Marker (you know - the one that never erases off furniture or the white board) and drawing a clown's face on the person as the person is talking fear and worry in your mind - (draw a big clown's nose, Bozo red hair, and BIG ears etc.) will help you. TRUST ME on this.

And laugh as it tries to enter.

Then turn away to something else more positive or a list of actions you have to get done in the next hour.

Getting busy - one of the key terms in Al-Anon - is what leads us to happiness, for happiness is a by-product of doing something else. If you aim for happiness - in my little opinion and what I have read and researched - you will have difficulty in finding it. If you focus on the efforts of the things you have to do - aiming toward what you desire - but again - focusing on the efforts and finding joy in the efforts - this can lead to happiness.

Eliminating negativity starts with training your mind. Yep. Training. Back to the puppy analogy. Maybe not my best analogy. Maybe it is. But you hopefully now understand, you are the MASTER and no longer have to be servant to it getting fed bad food (thoughts).


Kim A. said...

Thanks for the tips on visualization. I will definately use the Bozo hair one. It's been an especially tough week so far and it's all been in my head...mostly. Thanks for the reminder!

Syd said...

I'm mastering the sit and stay command in my mind today. I got the down command a long time ago. Thanks Joe for the words of wisdom.