Thoughts about Thoughts

Written by Meredith Kimmel

January 22, 2020

One of the biggest lessons I learned in 2019 was that my thoughts are only my thoughts. My thoughts are not defined truths and I don’t own them. I came to this revelation through a question posed to me by my coach during one of our coaching sessions in the last quarter of 2019. 

My mind was blown. 

I always assumed my thoughts were hard and fast truths.  During that coaching session, I learned that I can evaluate each thought that entered my head.  I could decide to keep the thoughts that served me the best and I could dismiss the thoughts that did not serve me. 

Since that coaching session, I have been making a diligent effort to evaluate my thoughts and dismiss the thoughts that don’t serve me.  This is not easy work.  It does take time, but it has done wonders for me.  I try to think more with my “gut brain” and react more with my intuition.  (I will tackle those topics in future blog posts.  This one is about thoughts.) 

During the first yoga class I took in 2020, the teacher, who I never practiced with before, said something to the effect of you don’t own your thoughts, they are just your thoughts, you can choose to keep them or dismiss them.  I was so struck by this statement because I just learned this at the end of last year.

This statement got me thinking.  If this was so important that my teacher had to impart her words on thoughts to the class, maybe this is a topic that needs to be discussed. 

Why do we give our thoughts so much value?  Why do we attach so much meaning to them?  Why do we define ourselves by our thoughts?    

My conclusion is that we don’t realize that our thoughts are just that…only thoughts.  They don’t have value, but we buy into them anyway.  We hold our thoughts as truths and we make decisions according to them.  If we have negative thoughts, we tend to accept them.  Why not? Our thoughts come from our brain and we assume that our brain knows what is best for us.

That isn’t true and we can control what we do with our thoughts.  The evaluation of our thoughts and the dismissal of thoughts that do not serve us will help us to make better decisions for ourselves.

I challenge you to take a few extra seconds and evaluate a thought when it enters your head.  See if the thought makes sense.  If the thought works for you and you decide to accept it, great.  If the thought doesn’t serve you, dismiss it. You don’t have to question why that thought came into your head.  Just dismiss it and move on.

Recognize that you don’t own the thought and that it doesn’t define you.  It is only just a thought that you have.  Move on and celebrate that you let it go.

See if your mind is blown, like mine was.

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