It was the very early 90’s when I got my first audio cassette about “self talk.” It was a foreign concept at the time, but now is so permeated in our culture it’s become a catch phrase and a cliche.
But how many of us are conscious of it on a daily basis? An hourly basis? A momentary basis?
I know I’m not. And I like to think of myself as pretty damn aware.
Last night I had a dream. All kinds of things happened, but the real gift was, as I was waking, I saw a vision that symbolically explained to me what our thoughts do as they move through our body.
First, we are all made of energy, yes?
Second, thoughts? They’re just energy in motion, with an intention.
Finally? Your body, your psyche and your life listen to those messages. Your being unfolds or tightens or crumples as a result of them.
Didn’t do your yoga this morning? Not so important to your well being as the thoughts you think about NOT doing the yoga this morning. Ate a chocolate pie slice instead of a salad at dinner? Not so important to your body as the thoughts you think about that choice. Denying yourself a book, a movie ticket, a bauble, a trip, a new relationship because you think you can’t afford it?
The thing itself is not so important, having it or not having it will not hugely impact your life. But your thoughts about it can and do impact your life.
I woke up this morning with an apology on my lips. “I’m so so sorry,” I said to my body. And my life. “The energy I push at you is so forceful at times, you’d think I was a bully. I’m sorry.”
I read a missive somewhere that recounted an America journalist —years and years ago— asking the Dalai Lama what to do about shame, or more accurately, self condemnation. He didn’t understand the concept. Someone had to walk him through the Western world’s preoccupation with unworthiness and self aversion. And when he got the concept, he hung his head and cried.
Most of us wake up with intentions about our day, and go to sleep with a mental dialogue of how we did or didn’t perform, making even more intentions about tomorrow. Few of us go to sleep with praise on our lips, a lullaby of kindness in our thoughts, sending out messages of adoration to the far reaches of our psyche. Fewer still wake with thoughts of possibility and expansion, a mind ringing with sweetness and encouragement.
Sure, we’ll snuggle our dog and tell him he’s a good boy. We’ll cuddle our cat and tell her she’s the best thing in the whole world. We’ll bury our face in their fur and moan something unintelligible like “bushushuzzzzuuubujeeebuge
And to ourselves we say…?
Try giving your psyche a squeeze. Bury your face deep in her wings and give her a long, fawning ““bushushuzzzzuuubujeeebug
Pull out your most generous, encouraging, possibility-expanding, loving, permission-giving thoughts.
Your whole life is listening.
Tell me the lullaby you’ll sing to yourself upon sleeping, and the praises you will cheer upon waking.