After many hours of reading and audiobooks, I finally started getting a handle on why I feel so out of control in my mind and life. It’s because I genuinely am. It’s challenging to keep track of all the information provided in these books, so I started mind-mapping the concepts. Not only did this help me get down all the essential bits of information from my research, but it also gave me a visual representation of how all these things fit together and intertwine with each other.
So getting to the points I mentioned in my previous blog of being an utterly helpless bystander in my rat-maze mind; not having any control over my thoughts and emotions, here is what I have figured out so far.
Don’t fight for the wheel
If you are spending all your time and energy on trying to beat your mind into submission, stop. You won’t be getting anywhere any time soon because it’s like drinking a painkiller with the hope that the boiling water you are pouring over your skin will no longer hurt you. A lack of control over your thoughts and feelings is a symptom of being unaware and unequipped.
It’s defined as having conscious knowledge of your feelings and character. It’s not about controlling anything, but merely being aware. Self-awareness is the first step to improving your quality of life.
Awareness of the external
Being aware of your environment and your surroundings is just as important, as it has a significant impact on your emotional state. Here I’m not referring to how we feel about the environment or person, but rather just a raw and unprocessed account of what is happening around us.
Here and Now
This is the present moment, your inner state meeting your environment. We do not always make ourselves available to the moment; instead, we get caught up either in our minds or in what’s happening around us. We don’t assess how these two aspects influence our current state. This is where we feel a certain way about where we are or who we’re conversing with, physically and emotionally.
Your coping mechanisms to deal with thoughts, emotions, and physical stimuli; Avoidance, mirroring, fidgeting, anger, screaming…
Three aspects meeting each other to form the present moment; it seemed so simple at the time of drawing this up, but as I kept thinking about it, the concept became more and more complex. If these three things play together to create my here and now, then how can I use it to improve myself and my life? I’d first need to figure out what I have trouble within each area, list it out, and create a strategy on how to overcome each obstacle. Here is my analysis.
Do I really want to know myself? The little bit I know I don’t even like. How am I going to live with myself day in and day out if I know the person I hate most profoundly better than I already do?
Negative emotions have an insane impact on my mental state. I get stuck in a rut once an emotion takes hold of me, and whenever I think back on my life, all I see is regret and self-hatred. I don’t need more of those feelings. I need happy ones.
I never finish anything I start. If I commit to getting to know myself today, how long will it be before I quit?
Each day the same as the previous. The same routines and decisions.
As a single mother of two with a full-time job, where am I going to get the time to spend on anything other than parenting, housekeeping, and working?
I never get to leave the house or interact with other people or experience different environments (because there’s no time). Where I am is where I am.
The culture of today leaves little room for anything that is seen as unproductive. We are taught to believe we must always be doing something that will yield in a positive monetary return. Any time otherwise spent is a waste.
We are never adequately educated about how to get to know ourselves or taught how to promote a positive mindset within ourselves.
Whatever tools I choose to improve myself, I must put into practice regularly. This must be made a part of my routine or habits.
Now that I have some sort of a roadmap to give me a better idea of the problems I need to work on, I will need to find the tools that will help me overcome them. Being this honest with the world outside about myself is pretty difficult as I’ve only just started admitting these things to myself, but it is my genuine hope that something I share will awaken the self-searching and self-improvement giant within you.