Life – what is life without goals or a mind without thoughts? Thoughts are one of the most influential things that govern the way we perform in life and I don’t necessarily mean academic or professional performance. I am talking about something that resides inside us. We as individuals are responsible for enhancing the beauty of the way we present our mind to the world and ourselves.
Mind, can be both – an enchanting garden or a barren land, the choice is ours. We can be our own gardeners and choose the spectrum of brightest colors that makes our life worthwhile or let it be something that leads to nothing. Today let us look at the world we create, as gardeners – inside us.
I ‘hope’ that all of us have seen trees. Well, I am sure we have. Let us assume our mind as a garden. Any garden has a lot of trees like our mind has thoughts. More rooted the tree steadier it remains, which helps it to endure the challenges in future.
If you look at a tree in a garden or even a little plant in your house you will observe that there are some or many weeds around those trees or plants. Weeds are any wild plants that occupy an unwanted place, especially in a garden.
Consider this tree or plant as a positive thought. Weeds around the tree are negative thoughts. Weeds consume the nourishment from the ground but deliver nothing fertile. Likewise, a negative thought consumes so much of our energy and does not give anything fruitful to improve our life. In fact it hinders the growth of a positive thought, like a weed takes away nourishment from the tree.
If we do not get rid of these ‘weeds’ nothing progressive will grow inside our mind. These weeds which are our negative thoughts, will keep returning and add more weeds in that space. This is because a negative thought is extremely efficient in multiplying themselves and that too, rapidly.
What happens when we pluck these weeds out around these ‘enriching’ trees? The soil around the tree loosens making the soil more vulnerable, in return helping new weeds to crop up. In the same manner, when we try to get rid of a negative thought we make ourselves more vulnerable to attract other negative thoughts.
Here, it is noteworthy to recognize that the long term benefit is in planting another tree in that loose soil. Which means that we must ‘plant’ a positive thought when we cast aside a negative one.
We need to set a goal for ourselves to stay committed to these positive thoughts. A goal will help us remain positive. Also, we will be able to focus that any thought that does not take us to our goal is negative. This will not only assist in keeping us away from other negative thoughts, but also give us a sustained benefit in the long run.
We can try to understand this through an example of person with the problem of alcoholism.
- Know Your Weed (Negative Thought): Alcohol takes away all my stress. I need it every day to keep me fully functional.
- Goal: To quit / Minimize alcohol.
- More Negative Thoughts Your Weed Develops: But alcohol adds so much fun to my life. I shouldn’t make my life ‘boring’ in the name of change. Well, my drinking doesn’t harm anyone. My health is not affected so far and I guarantee it will not be affected further.
- Planting a Positive Thought: It is better to have control over my habit, before this habit controls me. It is correctly said, ‘A Nail is driven out by another nail. Habit is overcome by a habit.’
- Barriers to Reaching Your Goal: Commitment to my goal is lacking. Lack of decision making. I am looking for an immediate solution. Looking for a guarantee – that if I work on this goal, it will solve my issues for sure.
You can bring in changes in your life. Make a choice and face the challenges that the decision brings with it. It will be difficult but it will be worth your efforts.
If we look at this example, it is so important to realize that life does not come with guarantees. Life is more about probabilities. The biggest weed here is that the person is looking for a guarantee. ‘Life must change for better only then would I think of taking this effort.’ – A person with such thoughts will find it difficult to achieve their goals.
I conclude by saying – if we let these weeds grow, in spite of knowing that they are injuring to the beauty of our garden; sooner or later our garden will be left mostly with weeds. Even the few trees left in your garden won’t add to the beauty. A negative mind can never deliver positivity in our lives. We need to make a wise choice now, before these weeds out number the trees in our mind. So, let us all mind – our garden!