For the past few months I´ve been obsessed with the power of the mind. How far can it go? How much can it achieve? How much can it control? Just think about it, How much of your life does your mind control?
Your mind can´t control the world outside yourself, but it can control absolutely everything regarding yourself.
After reading several articles on Multiple Personality Disorder I came to understand a tiny little bit more of what the mind is capable of. One personality might need glasses, another personality won´t. One personality is allergic to shrimp, another personality isn’t. One personality has high cholesterol, the other personally doesn´t. The mind can give you illnesses and disease, or it can suppress them. Your mind controls your body, obviously! But are you fully aware of this power that lies within yourself?
Monks and yogis can spend days, if not weeks or even years, in extreme temperatures, with almost no food and still be alive without causing any harm to their bodies. This of course, happens when they´re immerse in deep states of meditation. But what does this tell you? That it doesn’t matter the world around you, it matters the world within you.
What´s in Your Mind?
I remember a decade ago when I first tried to quit smoking cigarettes, I joined a forum and there was this lady that had this very simple quote as her personalized signature:” control you mind and control your life”. At the moment I couldn’t fully grasp this notion. Cigarette addiction is a physical addiction after all. But no, not really, it´s mostly an addiction of the mind, just like most addictions.
My cousin is an occasional heavy smoker, when she comes to Mexico, she´ll smoke a pack-a-day, the moment that she leaves and lands in Chicago (her home) she automatically quits smoking and doesn´t crave it. Still, every time she comes to Mexico, she smokes a pack-a-day. Where is her addiction?
The addiction is the mind. Cigarette smoking is one of the hardest addictions to quit, but that is because it is mostly in the mind. Smokers (myself included) fail at every attempt because we don´t focus in changing our thought pattern. In changing our minds.
Your mind, WILL and DOES determine WHO YOU ARE! It doesn’t matter what the world outside of yourself believes you are, at least it shouldn’t matter to yourself. Your thoughts about you is what shapes who you are. Something as simple as being a cigarette smoker. If you believe you are a smoker, you will be smoker. If you believe you´re a non-smoker, then there´s no need for cigarettes. But it´s actually about BELIEVING that thought.
You ARE What You Believe You Are
My sister used to have this co-worker (that we´ll name Sophie) many years ago at her first job. Her boss treated her like an idiot and kept calling her stupid. My sister decided to treat her like she was smart, and would continually tell her how smart she was. When Sophie was around my sister she would behave and act very smartly, she would say mind-blowing things and would be able to address herself in an intelligent manner. But when Sophie was around her boss she would suddenly become clumsy, forgetful and would make several mistakes.
It wasn’t the world around her that was making Sophie smart or stupid, the world outside of Sophie didn´t control her IQ, it was what she believed that did. When she was with my sister she believed she was smart, when she was with her boss, she believed she was stupid and so she unconsciously acted stupid. Yes! It was external affirmations that made her shift from being smart to being stupid, but ultimately it was Sophie´s beliefs that gave way for this shift to happen. If she would have taken full control of her mind and the beliefs about herself, she would had believed that she was truly smart and no boss of hers was going to make her think otherwise, then she would have acted smartly ALL the time. Not just with positive external affirmations.
Your Mind: Your Inner World
This is pretty much the only thing that you´ll ever be able to fully control and that is if you actually work to control it. I wrote a few weeks ago an article about how little of your life you can control, and it´s true, you won´t be able to control most of the things that will happen outside yourself. But you can control your mind, who you believe you are, the choices that you make and to some extent (maybe a full extent, I don´t know) you can control what happens inside your body.
Your mind can be your biggest enemy or your biggest ally. It all depends on how you mold it, how you work it, how you control it. Let your mind loose and your life will become hell. Control it, use it, mold it to your advantage and you´ll see your life change.
Question is, how do you gain full control of your mind?
I´d be lying if I said I new the answer to this one, since I find myself battling the restlessness of my own mind. But I´ve found a few tricks out there that have helped. Of course, results are in the amount of the effort that you give. But here are a few things you can do to start gaining control:
- Breathing exercises
- Practice Willpower: Start with small things, like not eating an extra piece of chocolate
- Thought analysis: Start analyzing the quality of your thoughts.
- Choose your thoughts: Think, does this thought accomplishes a purpose in my life? If not, then let it go, if yes then think what´s the purpose for you to be thinking about that or like that.
Changes will not show rapidly. It´s a subtle change. It takes practice, it takes determination and it takes discipline. But if you can conquer your own mind, you can conquer your own world.