You’ve been on my mind and I’ve been thinking about you and thinking about you and thinking about you, etc. etc. No, this isn’t a typo; just an example of a thought loop!
Do you ever get caught in a thought loop and it seems like it’s never going to end? I have and the worst for me is when it’s a negative thought loop or a bad experience that keeps playing on and on in my mind.
Fortunately, I had a great professor in college that was a brain researcher, and, over the years, I’ve been able to control a lot of these thoughts- not all, but a lot. The reason I focused on learning these skills (including meditation) was because he said, “Experts estimate that the mind thinks between 60,000 – 80,000 thoughts a day. That’s an average of 2,500 – 3,300 thoughts per hour.” That’s incredible, right?
He went on to challenge us to pay attention to our thoughts. As students, we were amazed to discover that most of our thoughts were useless, unimportant thoughts that passed through our minds at great speed and were often thoughts we had thought yesterday. These thoughts include comments the mind makes, repeating what you heard said, questions, answers, worry thoughts, negative thoughts, etc. etc. Now, that’s a lot of attention and energy given to thought production and a lot of attention given to potential negative thoughts. If you’re like me and believe that what we think and believe is what we create, then, well— you get the picture.
Since then, brain research is developing at a rapid rate and so is research on thought. One of the researchers is Dr. Rick Hanson, a psychologist and expert in positive neuroplasticity. What I like about his work is that he takes somewhat difficult brain science and explains it in a simple, understandable way. And, what he explains is amazing. We can actually create new “grooves” in our brain and, therefore, change the brain’s negativity bias and create peace, happiness and calm!!! It’s clearly a way of building inner strength to face all of life’s challenges.
In searching for information on this subject, I found a couple of videos below that are extremely interesting.
One is a TEDx talk that Dr. Hanson did about hardwiring happiness (also the name of a book he has written) and I wanted to share it with you. I hope you will gain something from it. He’s also written a book called Resilient which I would highly recommend.
This particular TEDx video of Dr. Hanson below was done in 2013 and is approximately 13 minutes and gives an overview of his ideas. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jpuDyGgIeh0
However, the following video is approximately 30 minutes and is a 2019 interview with Dr. Hanson and Marie Forleo called How to Build Unshakeable Inner Strength Using Neuroscience. I really loved this one so if you have time, go for it. I’ve had clients tell me that it has changed their lives.
Now, if you don’t want to take the time to work on changing your brain’s “grooves”, then there is another way. Guess what it is. Just stop it! If you have any problems with that, you might watch this Bob Newhart video. It’s only 6 minutes and is hilarious! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ow0lr63y4Mw&feature=youtu.be
And, of course, I’d love to hear from you by commenting below or by sending me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Looking forward to hearing from you about what you think about this information! It’s made such a difference in my life and I hope it will in yours, too.
Blessings on your journey, Beverly