A t-shirt on a young girl shouted at me in bold, bright letters. I forgot that sometimes the answer is so simple.
“The…true you reflects in the mind which is your mirror… If the mind has a lot of waves like the surface of a lake, you will be seeing a distorted reflection.”
-Thinking negative thoughts distorts your natural peace.
“To see the true reflection, see that the water is clean and calm and without any ripples.” (Swami Satchidananda, Book 1 Sutra 3*)
-To feel our true self, our self at peace, we must remove disturbing thoughts.
I have had many negative thoughts this year in particular and at times have felt I hit bottom. I keep waiting to not feel crushed, but have realized that I myself am keeping myself down by allowing – feeding on – negative thoughts. Now I try to be vigilantly conscious of their appearance and with great struggle stop a thought and replace it with something else.
I remind myself that negativity only hurts me. The world doesn’t change – only my experience of it can change.
I remind myself to nurture gratitude and list a few things I am grateful for in my head.
I remind myself to replace a negative with a positive (or at least a neutral).
I remind myself to breathe.
Frustrated the other day because my 3-year-old refused to listen to me (as is perfectly normal for his age and an everyday occurrence) – I laid on my bed and covered my face with a pillow. He clambered in after me asking what was wrong. “Mommy, take a deep breath.” After I complied, I told him I felt better.
I guess he does listen…
* Quotes from Satchidanada, Swami, The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali/translation and commentary by Swami Satchidananda, Integral Yoga Publications, Yogaville, 1990.