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It’s ok to lay your thoughts down

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“We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves.”  Buddha

Photo by Michael Mroczek on Unsplash

This morning on a walk with my dog, I was trying to be mindful by listening to my surroundings. But as has a tendency to happen, thoughts started to crowd into my mindful space. They seemed like important thoughts, but in a moment of realization, I decided to lay them down on the trail I was walking.

 

Laying thoughts down

Of course, I couldn’t literally pluck the thoughts out of my brain and lay them on the ground. Oh, if only I had that power. But I did make a conscious choice in the moment to mentally put the thoughts to rest for the time being.

I knew, being the faithful companions they are, that those thoughts would find their way back to me.

 

Is it that important?

Before I was able to let those thoughts rest, my brain really wanted to convince me that it was very important that I keep thinking them. And not only keep thinking them, but to follow them down the rabbit’s hole to other thoughts.

But here’s the deal: while it is important that we remember some things (write those things down), so much of the time that we’re thinking random thoughts, we really don’t need to be thinking those thoughts at all. 

Thinking about what I’m going to wear to dinner this weekend while going to bed on a Tuesday? Not necessary.

Thinking about the email my boss sent me earlier in the day while sitting at the dinner table with my family? There’s nothing to do about it right now.

Worrying about checking my Instagram account while I’m in the shower? Really not necessary.

 

Necessary thoughts

There are, of course necessary thoughts. These thoughts create a better life experience. But unnecessary thoughts typically far outweigh the necessary ones in the human brain. 

Our brains are overthinking machines. This is the nature of having intellect and a brain that acts like a supercomputer, calculating all day long. Calculating so much in fact that you can think upwards of 80,000 thoughts… per day!

Sometimes a brain, and a human, just needs a break.

So when you need to, just lay your thoughts down, because sooner or later they’ll come and find you. Enjoy the peace and relaxation that can come from a mindful space. 

 

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