When I went out for my morning walk with the dog, it was not long until I began to hear what sounded like a car playing music really loud. You know, the music that is so loud you can FEEL the deep base before you really hear it. My first thought was that it’s not even 7am yet. Who on earth would be interrupting this peaceful quiet morning with such noise? As I continued walking, I realized the noise was coming from a mini-van parked in the driveway a couple houses away from mine. Really? This loud? This early?
Continuing on my way, I rounded the curve and noticed a house that had put up flower planters along the porch rails. “How pretty” I thought. And then immediately, I wondered if that was also an indication that they had washed all the mold off the rails and finally repainted them after many years of neglect and deterioration.
Next, I came upon the yard that is trying to ensure that the world never runs out of dandelions or chickweed! Oh how awful it looked! And it occurred to me, “Oh, what judgment I have today! What mind chatter!”
My definition of mind chatter is that it includes all the stuff that goes through our heads in the midst of our everyday lives. Sometimes, it’s not so good. Often it’s not very positive. Proverbs 4 says to guard your heart and your words. “Be vigilant! Guard your mind against negative thoughts!” is a well-known saying from Buddha. "Our energy flows where our attention goes!" is a statement from Richard Dotts, an author I enjoy. If you follow the Law of Attraction theory, this means that you are creating what you focus on. Even if you follow none of these teachers, have you thought about what happens when we primarily have negative thoughts? A good deal of research has been devoted to how our physical bodies react to our thoughts. Dr. Deepak Chopra, Dr. Joe Dispenza, Dr. Caroline Leaf are some popular researchers and authors contributing to the body of knowledge about how our thoughts affect our physical being as well as our surroundings. And they all point to a result of negative thoughts having a negative impact on our well-being and on our world. Negative thinking tends to reinforce the negative beliefs we already have about ourselves. Who needs more of that??
The thoughts I described above were just a few that were going on during my 30-minute walk! What about the rest of the day? What is going on in my head when I’m working or eating a meal or driving somewhere? Today I am directing my awareness toward my mind chatter. Or is it mind CLUTTER! Today, it is my intention to clean it up a bit and guard my thoughts! If we truly do create what we think about, I want to focus on something beautiful and peaceful and joyful! And that means when I walk past a mirror, I don’t have an insulting thought about my appearance. Or when I see a social media post, I don’t think negatively about the person who posted something I’m not in agreement with. Instead, it means I notice the thought then let it go. I don’t ponder it or scold myself for my judgment. I just observe it, then let it go and redirect my mind to something that brings me joy and makes me smile.
Notice your mind chatter. Notice anything negative and let it go. There is only today in which to practice.