We all “talk” to ourselves, pumping up our nerve or patting ourselves on the back. But what happens when the mind talks back? Some people describe this chatter as wonderful and insightful, while others wish it weren’t so annoying.
Sure, the brain is generating thousands upon thousands of thoughts every minute, and some of them leak out and sound like advice. You are not crazy to talk to yourself. You are of a dual nature: you have an outward and an inward persona. Sometimes, they keep in touch. But what happens when the chatter gets too loud?
You might be in a state of confusion or chaos, inhibiting your ability experience love and joy. Thoughts pile on thoughts and your are desperately trying to sort them out. You might even obsess over one or two. So how do you quiet your mind?
At certain points in our lives, we want peace. We want to turn the noise of the brain off. We are tired of fighting the same battles over self-esteem, credibility, confidence, and judgment. It can get dramatic. Chatter tends to be on the negative things in life.
Once the chatter is drowning out the good thoughts, it is time to find peace. There are some ways to achieve a relaxed state of mind that can be done alone or together.
Keeping a diary or journal is a great way to evaluate what is meaningful in the chatter and to set priorities. Writing is a way to communicate with yourself as much as “talk.” Look at what you have written and see if it is predominantly positive or negative. Do you have trust issues? Trouble relating to others? A fear or phobia? Now you have a place to start.
It comes down to self-awareness as the key to peace. A quiet mind is a clear mind, one open to new ideas and thoughts. Dwelling on the past hinders this ability as there is no room for personal growth.
To counter negativity, writing affirmations is a great panacea. Write down each bad thought and answer it with a positive counterstatement. Let’s say you are having trouble with your youngest child and you get chatter of this nature: “I am a bad mother.” “I don’t know how to parent.”
Now write a response in the form of “I can learn to be effective.” “I love my child enough to work with him.” See the shift in tone. Your affirmations should release a stream of positive thoughts to energize you. Past patterns can be overcome with this technique, no matter how ingrained they have become.
Other ways to calm the chatter are prayer and meditation, universal panaceas for an unquiet mind. Many people use yoga as a physical way to relax the soul. You can use a mantra or your affirmations. You might start with an issue you want to solve, such as money problems and financial worries.
As you get into the zone and quiet the chatter, you can evoke only calming thoughts that slowly emerge to coax you into a new attitude. You might not find a way to secure more income this way, but you will tell yourself to stop the fear and use your energies to find a solution, such as a side job or a loan.
Repeated meditation sessions on the same subject will help you focus on it to the exclusion of other problems. This way, you talk to yourself about one thing at a time and the chatter clears. Watch your actions in the subsequent few days to see if you have reached a turning point.
As anxiety subsides, you should feel more in a position to do something tangible to alleviate your worries and get you back on track. You might need to move to a cheaper apartment, curb your spending, pass on the next vacation, or ask family for help.
With affirmations, meditation, and any other form of relaxation, you can quiet your mind and redirect your energies to positive experiences. You may even uncover deep-rooted issues from the past that you can work on and dispel.
We are all born with this capacity but seldom use it to its full potential. As such, we miss many opportunities to improve our lives and rid ourselves of recurrent negativity. With a few basic methods, we can restore our minds to a calm state and find peace and joy.
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