Throughout the course of a day do you feel passive, down, angry or disappointed?
I am not talking about the busy moments of the day where we have no time to think but those moments when you can literally hear yourself think. When you start a conversation with yourself.
These hard times are usually when
- you are sitting in your car, stuck in traffic
- you are sitting on a train
- you are on the toilet and oops forgot your iPhone to entertain you
- you are showering
- you need sleep but your mind now decides to go into overdrive
When I feel down, angry disappointed,.. my mind wanders far more than usual. I start ranting in my own head. I am both protagonist and antagonist in the conversation and I create the most beautiful, yet crazy dialogues. At times I drive from point A to point B on autopilot and wonder how I even got there, I mean which route did I even take?
Have you noticed how the negative thoughts and emotions stick a lot longer in your mind?
I tell myself to stop it and 5 seconds later I’m back at it. It’s a habit and you know habits are like… It’s hard to quit.
I believe many of us have these mental conversations although we don’t like to admit it. Why would we? It sounds crazy!
I want to tell you that it isn’t crazy. It comes naturally to some of us. Especially after you’ve been hurt by the ones closest to you. By those you trusted the most.
For me it was love that triggered this kind of thinking. In my experience love is the strongest human emotion conceivable. It’s almighty. Love lifts you up and carries you to the highest emotion. To feel this love you have to connect. to connect, you let your guard down. When you let your guard down you let this person see the good, the bad and the ugly and you must trust that they will accept and love you for it.
I’ve been in love twice and both times it was more than amazing. Both times the relationship ended. Wanting to continue loving but not being permitted to is the toughest challenge I ever had to overcome.. Twice..
After telling you this it might not seem all that crazy that I developed these negatively tinted conversations in my head. Feeling angry, misunderstood, wronged.
An excerpt of one of my dialogues:
- ‘Damn, I miss her today. I want to tell her this!’
- ‘But isn’t love also letting her go? Shouldn’t I just be happy for her?’
- ‘But don’t I deserve to be happy as well?’
- ‘Why did I have to act jealous that one time, was that the turning point?’
- ‘Tim don’t be stupid’
- ‘Well think about it, ….’
Images and memories pass on by until something snaps me back to reality.
There are many books that have helped me overcome this way of thinking. I’ve changed this habit and replaced it with one I actually like. One that makes me feel great. One that is very counterintuitive.
Henry Ford inspired me with the quote:
“Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t – – you’re right.”
This quote taught me that I have the ability of choice!
In The 7 Habits Of Highly Effective People (a book I recommend reading) I learnt that I had the ability to choose how I respond to any given situation. I don’t have to react, I don’t have to feel victimised. No, I look back and feel grateful for the love I once had!
This leads me to another powerful lesson that has impacted me deeply. It’s called:
Amor Fati – The Love Of One’s Fate
“To do great things we need to endure tragedy and setbacks. We have to love what we do and all that it entails, good and bad! We have to learn to find joy in every single thing that happens. It is the act of turning what we must do into what we get to do.
– Excerpt from The Obstacle Is The Way
Accepting that I do not have the ability to control but the ability to influence and respond has freed me.
I am grateful to have loved since it made me want to be more. It lit up that spark in me and inspired me. I am grateful to have lost and endured the hard times because it taught me that I own the love inside me and I choose to respond with love instead of anger or bitterness.