"Unfortunately, it's a bit of a binary thing.
Either you develop the skills to recover your attention from the largely unwanted and unhelpful, repetitive, persistent thought patterns. Or you become a slave to a narrative that you've adopted in your mind."
Humans all share a genetic blueprint—a set of Traits. Traits are characteristics like our ability to collaborate and share.
One trait that humans share is a tendency to adopt a common narrative. A common narrative is a collection of shared beliefs that explain our everyday reality. We will each adopt a slightly different version of the common narrative specific to us and our life experience.
We experience this as an inner narrative, a personal story, a collection of mental movies.
Because of the complexities and pressures of the modern world, this narrative can get out of control. Our inner narrative can become critical and repetitive, and self-destructive. I have met students for whom this experience has suddenly appeared in an otherwise charmed life.
The common narrative says staying distracted is how to deal with this nagging worrying inner critic. We are taught to remain constantly active to distract ourselves from the contents of our minds.
This strategy is insane. It goes a long way to explain the wave of anxiety and stress. You can't always ignore your mind. Your mind will always be with you. Unless you become familiar and comfortable with your mind, there will come a time when you discover it is not on your side.
The answer is simple. Do reasonably regular mindfulness meditation, and in time, your mind will become your supporter instead of your critic.
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I explain this further and teach some practices to help get you started in the podcast below.
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