Deciphering that Thought Code…….
I wake up before my alarm of 0500 hours and the urge is to slip out of bed, gobble up my fenugreek and chia seeds with warm lemon water, make myself a hot cup of tea and step outside to be with the breeze and the birds. While I execute all this my mind thinks thoughts of all kinds. I remember waking up like this when young along with my cousin and slip out while everyone else slept inside and roam the vast 5-acre Dad’s magical property. I try to imagine what it would feel like if I had someone like Mom to sit and talk to while I sipped tea. The rustling leaves remind me of Dad’s place in New Zealand during autumn. Then there are random thoughts of “Gosh, hope I have not wasted too much time for I have my routine chores to do” after which I hear my turkeys and my thoughts jump to making sure they come out systematically one by one otherwise they would fight for dominance, so I call out early morning instructions to my guard constable. The bright morning sun and orange sky make me wonder why I was alive another day. Should I be thankful? Maybe. What would it be like throughout the day? Busy, is what my mind settles for.
Looking out for time to settle down with just myself and my work, I realize it is past noon and lunch time is fast approaching. I must carry down food for my in-laws, take a quick see at the fag end work in the kitchen, check up on my rabbit pets, change the all-out liquids in three machines, fill up soap and basmati rice from my larder, Oh, even the toilet paper rolls and also the Comfort fabric conditioner and Harpic had their last drops squeezed out a while ago, then someone calls out for me asking me to see and tell if the placement of the pots was done well and as if all this wasn’t enough, as I step out to see why my guinea fowls are screeching at my kitchen door on the left, I spy the tulsi growing lush and green and am tempted to pick out some for the evening tea and my rabbits treat snack too, when I chance upon a fleeing snake just a few inches from me. Kaput goes my time or my wish for my time. The rest of the morning melts away into the afternoon as I get the overgrown grass and the wildly growing passion fruit and bottle gourd pruned and the trees clipped a bit from my windows. The camera caught the dancing cobra near the tulsi plants seconds before I stepped out – Bless my guinea fowls who were making a ruckus due to the slithering guest, no doubt. My speaking to them for those ten seconds more, led to the unwanted guest scamper off at lightning speed.
Aha, over-thinking, some would pronounce. An empty mind, others would cluck, disapprovingly. Either would be far off the mark. For I term this as my signature to being ‘alive’. Yet it is at our peril that we think thoughts, for the burden of those is far too heavy to carry along.
Thoughts make us aware.
Thoughts make situations come alive.
Thoughts help us dream.
Thoughts remind us of memories.
Thoughts are the bedrock of ideas.
Thoughts can weigh us down.
Thoughts can burden us with realizations. Thoughts can be a drain on emotions.
Thoughts can make us liable for our inactions.
Thoughts can load us with remorse.
Thoughts can saddle us with guilt.
Every scenario and situation and set-up and consequence generates thoughts. The power lies in thinking above them and beyond.
MY TIPS to myself to knock-out the burdening Punch of Thoughts:
DIVERT, DIVERT, DIVERT – I negate their crippling effect by diverting my mind into things which suit my mood – A book to read, some interesting designing to do, redoing my room, settling my cupboard – just doing anything, even if absent mindedly!
READ, READ, READ – Anything which I can lay my hands on. It puts up a ‘No Vacancy’ sign on my mind and then I am drifting away with the thoughts of others. A refreshing change!
BAKE/COOK/KNIT/CROCHET/GARDEN – I dust up even the most remote activity I want/can do in the present which even if it seems like a chore, will make my mind do something else. A therapeutic instant!
QUIET MINDFULNESS – I sit quietly by myself, listening to the sounds of the outside (not my inside: NO!!). The traffic, the vendor shouting, the birds, my turkeys, my maids, the neighbors. It changes the mood!
LISTEN to MUSIC – Always calms me down, takes me to the film or any moment which is not burdening. It gets different!
DIAL A FRIEND – Always helps for even if she/he wants to talk of something else I always make sure the conversation stirs towards whatever topic I want to share my angst about. Aha! It is let out!
WRITE, WRITE, WRITE – It always leads to the muddle clearing up and all the fuss seems manageable and a much-ado-about-nothing. Well, often. On other days, the lovely comments for a from-a-heart post leads to a smile, an acceptance. Situations can be bad, dealing with them makes us the Stars!
LETTING THE WATER PASS – I literally let it be. When a day or too passes by and I have occupied myself into something and a day becomes another and then the day after, the burden seems bearable and easy to lug around. An easy solution!
Every time I am hit by my thought’s tornado, I try my best to board-up for that Level 3 tsunami situation when all hell shall break lose. I read and decipher my emotional quotient these days and I know the feelings which precede that tearful situation. I steel up and am ready!!
After many an episode, I have decided to take the bull by the horns and ride it instead of being battered by it. Let my thoughts bear the burden of their weight upon my mind. I shall think them but not let them make me think them. Too much.
The turmoil of the emotions and feelings which make up the ‘Thoughts’ is like a storm of reactions to events past, present & future.
Image courtesy : Me; On one of my travels back home this storm was building up over Malaysia, fascinating and scary at the same time, much like the ‘thoughts storm’.
Memories and thoughts aren’t made in isolation – there are solid bedrock of experiences behind each. My travels to home are made with and about many things – my bag with the cutest travellers on board is my huge mood lifter! Sigh! I hope to be able to visit home again soon and then the thoughts demon shall melt away too.
What’s on our thoughts platter? Several emotions, a wide range of feelings and moments and misses and near misses, people with us and not with us along with the daily routine garnishes which may or may not enhance the taste buds of dealing with the enigma called LIFE. Yet nonetheless, we savour the sweet and the bitter, the sour and magical and bumble along on a full stomach of outcomes, opinions, attitudes, faith, tolerance, sincerity, deceit, decadence, damaged hearts and mind.
Image courtesy : Me; The lip-smacking Sea food platter on Rottenest island, Australia
Learning to find my way through the labyrinth of overwhelming emotions, myriad thoughts and the feeling that “of all that I would and could have done differently if I knew that I had a whole year and a half” and counting before me “in which I was not going to be stepping out” – Oh so, so true!!!
Image courtesy: My brother near the Southern tip of what I know call home: New Zealand.
Quote courtesy: Dr. Usha Naik