The concept of life being a buffet of thoughts that you can choose every day like your clothes or what you eat is one that I have been familiar with for a long time. It really is the whole notion behind the idea of positive thinking. But mostly I found the practise much harder than the preaching.
This morning as I cleaned the house I listened to a series of podcast interviews with Dr Jill Bolte Taylor a brain scientist who experienced a stroke in the left hemisphere of her brain and lived to not only tell the tale but to share some fascinating insight on the subject of choosing your thoughts.
Toxic repetitive thoughts have been the bane of my existence since I have been trying to get pregnant and even though my husband and I are on a break right now those thoughts still plague me. Sometimes its like ground hog day leading into the last two weeks of my cycle. Am I pregnant, are my breasts sort, I’m not pregnant, when will I tell everyone, spiralling into I’m never going to get pregnant and so it goes over and over.
Jill explains in no uncertain terms that we can choose our thoughts and easily. Since reading A New Earth I have been trying to empty my mind and to just connect to the present moment and zone out from everything else. When I am relatively at peace I can do this. But when something is upsetting me or I am in the grips of 2 week wait desperation I have found it harder.
This is where Jill’s suggestion is golden, she explains that we can only be thinking one thought at a time – so choose. Be present to your body and realise when a thought is bringing you physical discomfort, anger or stress stop it dead in its tracks and give your mind a new thought to play with – a thought that brings you freedom, happiness and peace.
Sounds so simple but I am blown away by it. Her story is inspirational, she suffered a stroke in 1996 and lost the left side of her brain this means all cognitive ability, to speak, walk, read, write and to even distinguish voices. But what she says she gained is the richness of her right brain where she felt herself to be not only part of the universe but as big as the universe. She experienced a quite mind a place of true nirvana – where she felt that she was whole, perfect and connected to everything. A place she believes all human beings have inside them that is only a thought away.
Jill explains that all thoughts just open and close certain circuits in the brain so the more you train your thoughts into things that make you feel whole, connected and happy the more easily your brain will start doing it for itself.
I started today with a simple exercise, every time I think about pregnancy in a negative way, I stop intentionally and declare – I can choose my thoughts and I replace the thought with when the time is right I will be pregnant.