Busy Mind, Unsettled Life

It is getting cold at night and I find I don't like to be cold that much anymore.  Colorado can be full of extremes with close to 80 degrees today and frost last night.  My gloves were on for my run in the morning but soon my sleeves were pulled up and the glove in my pocket.  We humans are amazingly adaptive.  I think of the miners in Chile who went through a really awful ordeal and how they adapted to being in that hole for 69 days and now they will have to adapt to the media, the attention, and their forever altered experience of life. 

This got me thinking about the mind and its affect on how we experience life.  The mind is complicate, mysterious and unpredictable.  How we handle things is a mixture of experience, conditioning, choice, flexibility and creativity.  The more flexible the mind, the more options we have in dealing with the challenges of life.  Some of the latest research on the mind I have been reading (The Mind And The Brain by Jeffrey Schwartz and Sharon Begley and the Awakening the Mind by Anna Wise) show the mind to be more flexible, and more adaptive than we had thought of in the past.

There really is no limit to the minds capacity to flex, be fluid, be open, understand, innovate, create and so much more.  How much exploring of our own mind's capacities do we do?  When was the last time we thought about taking our mind for a drive to see how it performs or try to test its capacities.  Most likely rarely or ever is the intentional exploration of our mind going on.  We take for granted what our mind can do and often never take it anywhere other then down the familiar pathways. 

Maybe it is time to do some exploring?  Maybe it time to push off the comfortable couch of habit and the ordinary?  Maybe it is time to see what is possible in new and exploratory ways? Are you up for an adventure?

Let’s start simple and we will expand from there.  First lets begin by getting to know our mind.  The mind is a busy, buzzing center so the first thing we can become aware of it all that goes on there in our brain just to keep us up and running.  This endless activity is natural for all of us.  See if there is some kind of rhythm or order to the workings of the mind, does it just go or pulse, or surge, or rise and fall in activity. 

If you are willing to take the time to notice as you read this, sit back and just listen inward to the fast stream of thoughts and inner dialogue.   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Stay with the listening for at least a few minutes.  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

What do you notice as you listen in to the workings of your own mind? 


Then return to listening and see what happens, does it continue to be firing rapidly or does it alter its pace.  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 

Sometimes just the act of listening can slow the mind down.  

Now pay more attention to the content, the focus, the tone, the perspective, of the thought parade and also notice if it is supportive or critical.  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

What do you notice this time?

What many notice when we explore the workings of our own mind is that our thoughts are totally out of control and distracting.  This awareness invites us to think about taking our lives back from the chaos and craziness of the mind.  This state of unsettled activity leaves us without any questions about why we have such a difficult time finding peace within. 

In the next post or two I will talk about taking this mind-watching further and a few ways to bring a greater degree of calmness to the workings of our mind.