Alone With Your Thoughts

In this time of voluntary quarantine I’m willing to bet that there are many people who find themselves struggling with something that might not be boredom… I bet that there are many of us who are scared of the dialogue in our own minds:

“I’m fat!”

“I’m so lazy!”

“God, I hate being at home with my family!”

I’m just throwing some examples out there but there are many more criticisms we could throw at ourselves. One challenge to self reflection and personal scrutiny in the modern world is the constant onslaught of demand on our time:

“I would but…

My Job…

My Kids…

My Spouse…

The Phone…

The Facebook…”

Again, just a few examples of things that we use to distract ourselves (I didn’t even get into the more pernicious things like drugs, food, alcohol etc.). With the Coronavirus lock-down that many of us are currently under, at some point, we’re probably going to be faced with empty time. At some point, the kids are asleep and you can’t sleep… At some point, social media consumption just starts feeling like a waste of energy… at some point, the distractions may not distract so well anymore… then there’s just you and your thoughts.

I am a fan of positive self image but I am even more of a fan of facing the truth. Are you fat? Are you Lazy? Why do you hate spending time with family? It’s one thing if my self-talk simply isn’t true but it’s another thing if my self-talk is truth I’m trying to avoid. Each one of us has to make that distinction for ourselves. What if that inner critic is telling the truth? What if that truth is really hard to accept?

Whatever it is, I gotta believe that acceptance of what’s real and then dealing with what’s real, at a minimum, allows one to make more accurate plans about the future. I’ve said this before: A map is useless if you don’t know where you are on the map. Could our lives feel useless/aimless when we aren’t acknowledging where we really are in life?

And yeah, some people will be offended by me using words like ‘fat’ or even ‘lazy’. Some people might feel that I just don’t get it because I don’t have kids… or I don’t have a mortgage… or I don’t have a chronic illness… and on and on… And you know what? You don’t have infinite time so you may as well face reality and get on with it. Start solving that problem. Adapt and Overcome.

What difficult truths do you need to face about your own personal character? What have these short comings produced in your life that you want to change? What part of your internal dialogue is a pure lie? Why has that language persisted?

-Travis

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