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.