We live in a really noisy world and sometimes regardless of how hard we try to find some shred of peace and quiet it can be incredibly difficult to do. With that being said and as loud as the outside world can be, it is sometimes within our own heads that the noise becomes relentless. I once read that we can have anywhere from 50,000 to 70,000 different thoughts that drift in and out of our minds per day and while there may be a positive thought here and there, the majority of our thoughts are often times negative. Think about that for just a moment. Hundreds of negative thoughts creeping into the privacy and shelter of our own hearts and minds every single day waging a war against what we all so desperately want; peace, happiness and serenity.
Over the years, I have become much more aware of just how loud my brain is and while I have worked hard to control those thoughts versus my thoughts controlling me it is not an easy task. Thoughts are powerful and even with years of hard work trying to push those thoughts of guilt, blame, shame and regret away, the negativity does return and can be triggered by anything and at any time. The old tapes seem to want to play over and over again if we allow them to and sadly, it sometimes leaves people stuck in the past unable to completely shed old patterns or to move on with life in peace. I have been there.
I grew up as a people pleaser and with a dad that was a chronic alcoholic, I became a care taker very young. Unfortunately, nothing I did was ever quite good enough and therefore I never felt good enough. Rejection or the feeling of anyone not being happy with me or not liking me turned me upside down and the worse I felt the harder I tried to please everyone and anyone. Trust me when I say the noise in my head has always been very loud. Recently, I had a situation where someone I have been close to was struggling with some personal issues and in part was blaming me. I did not handle it well. All of those voices of long ago started screaming in my head and I was quickly brought back to a time where I felt rejected and not good enough. It made me so incredibly sad and for several days I took it so personally that I was consumed by it. What I failed to remember is that I can let others have their feelings and that I am not responsible to fix them or to please them. With self-awareness, a quick tune-up with my counselor and staying busy immersed in those things that bring me joy I was able to quiet the chatter and regain control of the noise in my head.
So….there is good news. There is hope. It is possible to play a strong game of offense against all of the noise inside of your head. It is possible to be the boss of what you think and how you allow things to affect you or define you. Easy? No but it is possible. Here are a few key thoughts that I hope will help you along the way:
- Remember that you are NOT your thoughts. You are in charge and with awareness and discipline you can learn to control your thoughts. It feels liberating to be your own boss and to free yourself of all that noise.
- The old tapes and the noise that may have been dragging you down in the past does not define you. Find the wisdom in the noise and let it guide you to a place of simplicity and peace.
- Even if it has been years since you had the negativity of the past appear, recognize that it is possible to be vulnerable to any trigger and regardless of how much time has gone by. Be aware. Catch it and keep it in check. You have the power to quiet the chatter.
- Self awareness is one of the best gifts you can give to yourself in this journey. To be self-aware will help you to recognize when the noise is there and with strength and courage, you can put it where it belongs and walk away.
- Practice loving yourself every day. Live your life doing things that you love and that fill your heart with joy and gratitude. It is hard for the negativity to control you and pull you down if you are practicing good self-care and staying busy with things that you love and that make you feel good about who you are.
- Don’t beat yourself up if the noise finds you once in awhile. It happens to everyone.
- If someone else is causing you noise remember that you don’t have to own their noise, you are not responsible for their feelings and you do not have to fix them. Let them have their feelings, love with grace in your heart and quiet your mind. Play offense and plan your day and fill it with positive things.
- There are a lot of resources out there. If you are struggling to quiet your mind and find the peace and serenity you deserve, ask for help. It is OKAY.
We live in a noisy, chaotic world and yes it is sometimes difficult to find a place that offers the silence we sometimes need. We can’t always control the noise that exists in and around our daily lives and the world. However, it is possible to control the noise in our own minds and my sincere wish for each of you is that you are able to find peace, serenity and happiness in your journey. It is truly an amazing place to be and well worth the work it can sometimes take to finally arrive. Happy travels.