The human mind is an incredibly powerful resource. If that’s the only resource that we use though, it can end up leaving us feeling depleted and even self-identifying with our thoughts.
So how do we break the habit of overthinking and free ourselves to access more of our resources? By focusing on feelings: the good, the bad and the ugly.
Feelings can be physical, emotional and visceral. We don’t just want to feel them. We want to acknowledge them in the moment, verbally, out loud to ourselves. This way the body knows that we’re listening. And finally, we want to accept those feelings in the moment. What do I mean by “accept”?
If you have a feeling and you judge it, you’re not accepting it. If you have a feeling and you right away distract yourself, you’re not accepting it. If you have a feeling and you dismiss it, question why it’s there or try to explain it to yourself, you’re not accepting it.
Accepting means being in the moment with your feelings. Anything else is going to take you out of the moment.
Why do we want to be in the moment and accept our feelings?
Have you ever tried to call someone in order to accomplish something only to have them not hear you on their end? The body is always trying to tell us something through our feelings and if you’re not paying attention or if you’re not in acceptance of those feelings, the message can’t get through. This is why you want to be in the moment with your feelings: so that you can hear your body and enable brain-to-body-to-brain communication.
This communication is vital for our health, growth and prosperity.
There is another pitfall.
Let’s say that you decide that you’re going to listen to your body, you’re going to pay attention to all the feelings that you have. Well, no one is perfect and we don’t always feel everything and we can’t always pay 100% attention. We can sometimes see this as failure and this sense of failure can lead us to the overthinking hamster wheel, or we feel sh$&ty about ourselves or we may just give up and say ‘what’s the use?’
Breaking the Habit
Rather than focusing on failure, we can leverage our grittiness with knowing where the habit leads. Less energy, less freedom, more pain, more feelings of failure and worthlessness.
Sometimes a higher perspective is required; one that sees where you’ve been time and time before. The gifts of time and wisdom can bring illumination. We can see we’ve been down that road before, we know where it leads. This is why we practice feeling, acknowledging and accepting all of our physical, emotional and visceral feelings. They can guide us to a better life, a life that feels less like the road that we’ve travelled already and more like a new adventure!