Your Thoughts – Are They Consuming You?
On the left, is a picture of your brain. On the right is a picture of a computer hard drive. They both have something very important in common, and it’s not what you think. But before I go there, let me say this: Whatever consumes your thoughts, will control you. The mind, can be, a scary place. But it doesn’t have to be. Thoughts can act like a runaway train with no brakes. And like that train, they can wreck you, if you let them. So if you feel like this is you, that some category of thought is consuming you, there are things you can do starting now, to fix it.
One of the things the brain has in common with a hard drive is this… there’s no delete key. “Delete” in technology terms really isn’t “delete”. What it is, is “mark for future overwrite”. Meaning, when you delete something on your computer (or phone), it’s actually still there. It could be there for years to come. Maybe forever. All that’s changed is it’s been notated with a flag that says: this block of stored information can be overwritten. And it may or may not be overwritten in the future. It depends on whether or not the hard drive’s space gets exhausted after the item was “deleted.”
The mind, your brain, your not helpful thoughts… are the same. You won’t stop thinking about something because you tell yourself to stop thinking about it. It doesn’t work that way. Worried about something? Telling yourself to stop worrying about it will. Not. Work. Telling yourself to stop thinking about it will. Not. Work. There is no “delete.” Sorry. I really am.
It has to be overwritten. You CAN, replace that unhelpful thought with something helpful. Something better. Why do you think meditation works? It’s because it’s forced thinking about something better, something helpful, and it trains your mind to slow down to a healthier pattern with better thought ingredients. It helps overwrite the crap that you’ve been pressing delete on for God knows how long.
So when that not helpful thought rises to the top, and starts it’s little all consuming destructive agenda, you have to immediately replace it with something better. If you’re a Christian, you’ve got plenty of options for what that better option is. Maybe pick up the bible and freaking read it. And as you start to fill your mind with better substance, there’s less and less room for the not helpful crap. You have to overwrite. You have to replace. There is no delete. “Stop thinking/worrying about _______ “, is not a command the brain accepts. You have to overwrite, and replace. Create continued expanding distance between you and the unhelpful thought or anxiety, and fill in its place that which is good. If you’re in real trouble, and you know who you are… you’re going to have to go a bit further and start to replace and overwrite all the crap that happens earlier on, that triggers that unwanted runaway train. If you know the train is going to wreck, don’t even let it on the tracks. Take the wheels off. Stop connecting the cars. Destroy the track. Fire the engineer. Get rid of all the coal. You get the point.