Thoughts Are Like Clouds
I am here at Kalua Beach in Hawaii. And I’ve been sitting here, listening to the waves and watching the people and the dogs strolling down the beach. And watching the clouds as they float on by.
I’ve also been watching my own inner landscape, noticing how much my thoughts are like the clouds in the sky and how they appear, taking many different shapes and many different forms. Sometimes the clouds give me the indication that oh, it’s going to rain. Or oh, look, it just stopped raining and there’s a rainbow. I notice, these thoughts come and go like clouds come and go. And I can have all kinds of thoughts. Sometimes they are scary thoughts. Sometimes they are funny thoughts. Sometimes they are peaceful thoughts. Sometimes they are curious thoughts. There are thoughts thoughts thoughts thoughts thoughts. Because I have a mind, like we all have. And the mind is designed to contain our thoughts. They come up, regardless of what’s going on. We can have all different kinds of thoughts.
But here’s where things get tricky.
We start to believe our thoughts.
We stop questioning them and start believing any thought that pops up into our head.
So, for example, you can wake up in the morning with a fat attack — that’s when you feel like you’ve gained 20 pounds overnight. Now, if you were to pause for a moment, you would notice that it’s not possible to gain 20 pounds overnight. But every fiber in your being feels like you gained 20 pounds overnight.
So what has to happen is — you have to get curious and ask the question, and is that true? Maybe it’s true. Maybe it’s not true. What’s more important than the answer is that we question, we get curious about everything we think. Every thought that we have.
And after a while, you’ll start to notice that you are not your thoughts. You are the observer of your thoughts. You’re the questioner of your thoughts. You are the one who notices your thoughts. And when you notice your thoughts, what happens is, you get connected with your true self. Because who’s the you that’s questioning the thought? Who’s the you that’s noticing the thought? That’s your essential self. That’s who you really are. You are the awareness of the thoughts, not the thoughts themselves. And I have to tell you that that is very freeing: Because when you are the awareness of the thoughts, you’re not limited by them.
You have choice.
You can choose the thoughts that you are going to entertain.
And the thoughts you are going to allow to float on by.
As you’ll notice them, perhaps you’ll notice judgmental thoughts.
Well, okay, we all have judgmental thoughts. But if you notice them. If you observe them. If you question them, then that gives you a little bit of distance from them. And you can even use your imagination to imagine how you would respond to a small child who has that thought. Or your best friend who has that judgment. Then you can realize that your friend is not those thoughts. It’s a thought she’s having. You can empathize with how it must feel to have that thought. But that is not who she is.
So, as you start to cultivate a relationship with yourself as the observer of your thoughts, you stop objectifying yourself. You start having a relationship, having a deep intimate connection, with who you really are. And the more you do that, the more you recognize freedom, and choice, and the more you can experience a peacefulness. Because, you see, the thoughts, all those thoughts, come and go. They come and go. And who’s left? It’s you. You. Your essential self. Your soul self. The observer of the thoughts. The one who experiences the thoughts. And the one who chooses which ones to continue to entertain. Which ones to dismiss and not pay much attention to. But you’ll know that, regardless, they are not who you are.
So, spend some time with your own inner landscape. Notice your clouds. Notice the rainbows. Notice the stormy ones. Notice the foggy ones. Notice the dark ones. Notice the light fluffy ones. So that you can connect with who you really are. Which is way more than your thoughts. Way more than your feelings. Way more than this body. Way more than the sum of all of those. You are awareness.
I would love to hear your thoughts, share in the comments below!
Till next time,
iaedp Symposium 2020A Vision of Hope Using Indigenous Ways of Knowing to Heal Eating Disorders March 26-29th 2020 Omni Orlando Resort at ChampionsGate 1500 Masters Blvd Championsgate, Florida 33896 United States http://www.iaedp.com
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