How To Gain Control of Your Own Thoughts

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Quite often we find ourselves with many negative thoughts going through our mind. These trains of thoughts can become very powerful as we endlessly repeat them in our mind. The problem is that that the more we focus on the thoughts, the more powerful they become. Therefore, it can become very difficult to stop these endless cycles of thoughts.

However, it is definitely possible and these are a few tips to control our thoughts.

1. Make a conscious decision to Stop the thoughts

The problem is that sometimes we attach ourselves to certain ideas and problems, and we subconsciously get a kind of pleasure from going through a certain problem / issue. If we subconsciously keep inviting the thoughts, we will never be able to stop them. Therefore, the first stage is to make a clear and conscious decision to stop the repetition of the thoughts. Be aware of their negative impact and don’t allow them to come any more. This conscious step is an indispensable stage in controlling our thoughts.

2. Look upon the Thoughts as being Outside of yourself.

When we first try to stop the thoughts, it seems very difficult because they feel such a strong part of our mind. Therefore, the second stage is to feel that the thoughts are separate to our self. When a thought appears in your mind, look upon the thought as coming from outside yourself. This is a very powerful way to reduce the impact of thoughts on our mind. Once we realise our thoughts are separate to ourselves it becomes possible to stop them.

3. Who is it who listens to thoughts?

This is a technique to try and discover the origination of your thoughts. Whenever a thought appears, just ask yourself, who is it who is thinking this? What we do is to try and discover the source of thoughts. Through asking this question we realise that there is an “I” which can decide to accept or reject thoughts. By asking this question we will be able to stop the thoughts as soon as they enter. You are not a victim of your own thoughts, it is you who either rejects or gives life to thoughts.

4. Catch thoughts as soon as they appear.

This exercise requires a determined effort on our part. We need to be vigilant and watch every thought that enters our mind. As soon as we see a negative thought enter, we must immediately discard it and refuse to follow it. The more we follow thoughts, the more difficult it becomes to stop them later. Therefore, it is best to catch them as soon as possible.

5. Concentrate on Something else.

If we have a train of thoughts which have gained a stranglehold over our mind, the best solution is often to just try and do something completely different. Don’t just sit around, go and do something which gives you no opportunity to ruminate over your thoughts. By doing this we ignore the thoughts completely, and they lose there hold over us.

“Wrong thoughts are inside us just because we identify ourselves with these thoughts. If we identify with something else, immediately they have to leave us.”

– Sri Chinmoy [1]

6. Meditation

Meditation is the best way to learn how to control our thoughts. Meditation involves the art of concentration and quietening the mind. In meditation we not only try to control our thoughts but we also can bring to the fore our inner qualities of peace and oneness. If we can invoke the calming power of our own heart, then we use an alternative force to take the place of the negative mind.

“The mind has its own power, and right now this power is stronger than your present eagerness and determination to meditate. But if you can get help from your heart, then gradually you will be able to control your mind. The heart, in turn, gets constant assistance from the soul, which is all light and all power.”

– Sri Chinmoy [2]

We should meditate every day so that we can bring to the fore as much as peace as possible into our mind. If we only meditate when we are overrun with thoughts, we will find meditation very difficult. But, if we gain peace of mind through our daily meditation then we develop our inner capacities to control our thoughts.

Related:

References

[1] Mind Confusion – Heart Illumination at Sri Chinmoy Library

[2] The Silent Mind

Photo By Unmesh Swanson,

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89 thoughts on “How To Gain Control of Your Own Thoughts”

  1. hello
    this really helped me.. just before sometime i was thinking of killing myself and searching for techniques to kill myself in a painless way.. but this article really inspired me.. thank you 😀

  2. What I go through is my mind telling me to do something like look up something I don’t want to look up on the Internet or tell someone something I don’t want to tell them and until i perform that task, it doesn’t leave my mind. But now I am not going to let the thoughts come to my mind in the first place. Thank you, this helped

  3. Peter, I absolutely agree with you! Always keep god in your mind! I need to take that advice. Thanks!

  4. meditation is the power to control your mind and submit your mind and your soul to God’s feet.
    God will always help you if you have kind and noble intentions.Let God hold your hand and take you to what your heart desires.
    AUM

  5. To put your thoughts in control, you have to ask God to help you. In jeremiah 10 verse 23, it stated that it is not in the hands of an earthly human or man to direct its steps. This means that we need God’s help in every thing we are doing. In philipians 4 verse 8. It helps us to know what we should be thinking of instead negative things. With that bible portion, i mean philipians 4 verse 8, i firmly believe that one can control its thoughts.

  6. thoughts are strongly influenced by our surroundings so be careful of company and society. follow the voice your heart. use your intellect for distinguishing between mind and heart’s voice . mind always thinks of sense satisfaction but heart always thinks of soul satisfaction and soul satisfaction is divine and everlasting. Always try to keep yourself engaged in study of life sketch of great personalities, be careful of meal, make you busy in service of god and godly people .

  7. Very nice post.. I have got great ideas to thing positive and control/diminish negative thoughts,,

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