I was walking to the shower two mornings ago when all of a sudden I became aware of the thoughts rolling through my mind. They weren’t good.
They were a litany of ‘why Leesa’s an idiot loser dick-head’ for getting herself and her son into such a financial disaster that the electricity will be cut off any day, and homelessness threatens.
I realised these thoughts had been continuous for the past couple of months and I knew their name and where they came from. These are my ‘critical parent’ thoughts drummed into me as a child for twelve straight years 24/7, as my mother blamed me for her having to beat me.
And, for the millionth trillionth time,
I pondered the power of such ingrained thought patterns that we pick up from others.
And the consequences that are often truly devastating.
When I did my Grad Dip in Psychiatry I spent two semesters studying the different perceptions of schizophrenia cross-culturally. I discovered that the individual who had clinical symptoms of severe schizophrenia would suffer or not completely dependant upon the ‘meaning’…the thinking… given to these symptoms by the society around them; which they consequentially soak in, believe and make their own unless they have the rare ability to resist.
What this means in the cold-face is that in countries like Australia and America a specific set of symptoms are called schizophrenia which equals mental illness which equals medication, social rejection and abandonment which leads to poverty to depression to suicide, alcoholism etc etc.
Comparatively, in many indigenous cultures the same specific set of symptoms are called Shamanism which equals honour, reverence, being protected fed etc by the community. In this culture the person experiences no depression, there is no suicide rate and interestingly the symptoms debate around their forth/fifth decade.
SO the way we think about things not only profoundly affects the quality of our own life but also of all those around us.
Allowing negative thinking to dominate our mind is equivalent to a surgeon practicing poor hygiene. No matter how good a surgeon he is if he ‘aint washed his hands infection will set in and spread.
Refering back to my own personal experience, as soon as my mind started the blame game the germ was released into my Psyche.
This germ infected my sense of self; it had me interpreting events according to this agenda; it made me feel miserable infecting my physical energy and it cut me off from others as I felt more and more shamed that I couldn’t seem to pull myself out of this one.
And honestly so powerful is this process of negative thinking that even after learning and implementing all I know about this for the past twenty or more years still at forty-seven I find I’ve fallen victim again. Fortunately it was only a couple of months not years as in my adolescence and twenties.
Standing in the shower Monday morning I responded quickly (I’ve had lots of experience :)) ;mentally chuckling at my imperfections, hugging and forgiving myself and re-committing to the fact that the critical parent is not me but an old thought pattern from my childhood raising its ugly head when I’m run down. I would never inflict the critical parent on my son, on any other person and I remind myself I am worthy of the same respect.
So unlike my last blog where I felt disempowered and weary, right now having examined and released this thinking process I am of course just as poor as I was two days ago. But in stopping the blame game I have been able to write again.
I have enjoyed my first morning in weeks and I’m remembering things that are making me feel empowered…like the ability to imagine that has always led to my best actions. I observe there was no place for these thoughts when I was busy demeaning myself.
And hope increases the more my mind has space to think, to problem solve and so on without a litany of misery being told to suck my energy dry.
Lots of folk talk of whether positive thinking is a valid tool in enhancing life experience. I think it more important to focus on developing self-awareness and responding to negative thinking.
Examining and rectifying negative thinking is one of the essentials an adult must do because negative thinking is the pus of our psyche that infects us and those in our vicinity. Without doing this, positive thinking becomes absolutely impossible because of the underlying infection.
So if nothing intrudes I think my next blog will look at the millions of negative thinking processes I see being played out everyday in peoples lives including my own. For if folk could get more control over this process then the hard work of positive thinking disappears.
Oh, and we’ll see how I go applying all this guff to my financial realities.
p.s. thank-you Romy for sending me on a journey of ‘how am I’ that lead me to the awareness of the thinking process I had fallen into. xx 🙂