And so it goes that this past week has found me thinking about weeding and habits of mind. Maybe I should explain.
In my good friend’s yoga studio, YogaFish @ www.yogafishstuart.com, there is a book in the lobby of a compilation of thoughts from wise minds. A recent excerpt reads, “The key is changing our habits and, in particular, the habits of our mind.”
Habits of mind have many similarities with weeds. Both take hold quickly and grow even faster. Once the rain begins to water those weeds they’ll run with it leaving us pulling weeds that are knee high. Similarly, once gossipy neurons kick in and begin their conversations, a habit of mind is born leaving the person (me) wishing they would have stopped themselves before entering the rabbit hole. Therefore, it was very fitting that:
1) We had a rainy week in Stuart, FL to water and nurture weeds.
2) My husband and I have many landscaping beds around our house.
3) My mind was prime for some downward spiral, rabbit hole, type thinking.
Had I been on my game this past week, I would have kept all of this in mind. I would have remembered the quote knowing full well how habits of mind work. Had I been of sound mind (or, at least, sounder mind), I could have talked myself out of my what I call downward spiral, rabbit hole type thinking. The kind that begins with something like: a) I’ll never get all of these weeds pulled; continues with b) Oh my gosh, the garage is a mess; and ends with c) I’ll never achieve my dream of having beautiful pictures on this blog. Notice how many times I used the word, “never” when I describe my rabbit hole thinking in points a, b, and c. I don’t see the world in absolutes. Typically I do not use the word “never.” But, when my mind holds this type of mindset, overall, negative thinking pops up and populates my thoughts.
Sound silly? Maybe. But, take many, many steps back with me and apply that mindset that I’ve just described on a much broader scale. How would that affect the person with the negative gossipy neurons headed in for a job interview or finishing up their rough draft of a novel?
As we pull weeds out of our landscaping beds, we can also gently weed our minds. By weeding our minds, I mean we can uproot those thoughts that no longer serve us and those around us. We have the ability to re-route our neuronal pathways. Reframing and training our minds can be done through the work of meditation. It is a practice.