John Cleese and Groundhog Day

Just finished reading John Cleese autobiography So, Anyway… which is a book I recommend even for those who, like me, haven’t really got the British comedy scene from the 60s onwards down pat. One of the foremost insights I had when reading was how apparent it is that life unfolds, in mysterious ways, and how going with the flow of life can lead to fantastic careers, such as John Cleese’s.

But besides that, he talks a lot about writing (he sees himself first and foremost, as a writer rather than an actor), and stipulates a few rules for writing funny stuff, the second of which I really enjoyed reading:

BoldomaticPost_Your-thoughts-follow-your-moo

This I’ve found to be true: My emotions are a guide to my current state of mind, or mood, to use John’s words. I react to the world, from my current internal mindset, rather than have the outside world create my mood. I find this important!

It’s a bit like Groundhog day, you know, the movie with Bill Murray, where he keeps on reliving February 2nd, over and over again. The same things occur, and depending on his current internal mood, he’s happy, sad, angry, annoyed, depressed, frustrated about it. The same things. But his mood determines whether or not he perceives it to be good or bad, happy or sad, cheery or boring. This is true also in my life, as well as your’s, and is not a movie-feature.

If I’m in a miserable state of mind, I will see all things through that lens. It’s not the miserable things of the world that causes me to feel miserable. My mood tints the world into appearing miserable.

If I’m in a happy-go-lucky state of mind, I will see all things through that lens. It’s not the happy things of the world that causes me to feel happy-go-lucky. My mood tints the world into appearing happy-go-lucky.

One day I knock over a glass of water on the kitchen table and you would not want to be around me, for all the shouting, swearing and cursing going on, ruining my entire day and giving me ample evidence the whole world is out to get me. Another day, I laugh at my own clumsiness and after wiping it up just goes about my business, without a single cuss-word crossing my lips.

Have you experienced that as well, where the same things happened twice in a row, but your reaction is totally different?

Mind-made monsters

Here’s another recent thing I stumbled upon, which gives even more support to the exclamation that a change in expectation can make blind people see:

It’s about Sargy Mann, a painter, blind since 25 years. After going completely blind, he once more tried his hand at painting, and experienced the same as that which the Invisibilia-podcast on How to become batman also talks about: that the blind can see. Here’s Sargy Mann’s experience in his own words, which you can also hear yourself in the YouTube-clip:

BoldomaticPost_So-I-brush-aquamarine-up-ther

The way the mind and our thoughts shape our world, never ceases to amaze me. And it’s not about believing I can or not. (Even though that certainly can help or hinder my progress.) It’s about testing. It’s about picking up that paint brush filled with aquamarine, it’s about exploring the world which is there regardless if I see it or not (consider totally blind Daniel Kish riding a bicycle, a good example that blows my mind when I think about it!).

Is it perhaps about understanding, that whether I believe it or not, that’s thought and not truth, and there is only one way to find out: by doing.

Not having mind-made monsters limit me, living my life, for fear of something or other.
Not having to fight those mind-made monsters either, because then I create a battle ground in my mind, and try to get ready to fight. But – what I forget then is this simple fact: If the monsters are mind-made, then the fight is as well. It’s all make-believe.

Understanding this means that my relationship with my mind-made monsters is rapidly changing, and has been changing for the past two years or so. I now see them for what they are. Not for what I believe them to be. And that makes a big difference. It makes it much easier to not limit myself because of mind-made monsters. It doesn’t mean I don’t create monsters, because I do. I just don’t engage with them any more, in that imaginary battle, that is so energy consuming. I’ve spent enough energy in pointless battles with imaginary monsters, and I fail to see how that serves me or anyone else in any way.

So more or less (depending upon my state of mind in the moment!), I just don’t do imaginary battle anymore. Do you?

Being OK with what is

As I have an enormous amount of conversations at the moment, I keep being reminded about one of the key factors in the transformation I’ve undergone these past years. And I even got a reminder of it from the daily EnneaThoughts that I subscribe to since many years back:

Acceptance

Being OK with what is, accepting whatever emotion I’m feeling in any given moment. If you don’t recognize this, I hesitate as to whether or not you can you even begin to understand what a difference that acceptance makes, compared to constant inner fighting, not being OK with my feelings, not wanting to feel what I was feeling, and believing I was bad for feeling what I felt.

Oh the energy I’ve wasted over the years, I cannot even begin to fathom the extent of it….

But no more!

And guess what? I don’t beat myself up for the energy I’ve wasted over the years either. What’s done is done, and thanks to me doing it, I’m where I am at today, so really, it’s a blessing!

Because today, I am ok with what ever state of mind I am in. I am, truly, ok with it. I accept, fully, and with that comes complete and utter compassion and love. For me, but also for the world I live in.

This also means that even if/when life sucks, I’m ok, I’m good, and most of all, I don’t have to run away from what is, or fight myself for being where I am. I can just be with what is.

Are you ok with what is or do you fight it?

To worry or not to worry?

Had a lot on my mind when I stumbled upon a quote by his holiness the 14th Dalai Lama that I took to. Played around on PixlrExpress+ and ended up with this:

20140815-224113-81673278.jpg

My choice of picture to go with the quote might be a good indication of my current state of mind. Looking at it from a distance I’d give myself the advice to drop whatever is on my mind, and go do something else. Because there is just no point to worrying is there?

State of mind

I’ve given a lot of mind to the concept of State of Mind these past days, since a lot of Supercoach Academy 2014 Creation weekend centered around that concept. And today I got to sample it first hand. My brother and I (thank you Mary, I would have written me instead of I there if it wasn’t for your help!) went walking around Ely this morning, taking in the lovely scenery along the Great Ouse river. Not a cloud in the sky, summer temperatures and just a very faint breeze. Marvellous!

We went to The Almonry for a light lunch, and there we were graced with the presence of four absolutely adorable ducklings. (Sorry about the poor state of the pic though!)

20140519-205203.jpg

20140519-210214.jpg

Had a great time, and when we got up to leave I noticed I’d lost the envelope with my British pound notes, that I put in my back pocket when we headed off for the walk. Gone. Probably around £100 in it. Nowhere in sight.

It didn’t affect my state of mind though and I sort of shook my sholders at my brother who cringed a bit when he heard it. He thought we should backtrack a bit, to see if we could find it, and we did. But no envelope. So we headed home again, to get my stuff and head on home.

20140519-212252.jpg

And you know what? I really don’t care. And I mean it.

It was obviously a bad idea to keep it in my back pocket, so I won’t do that ever again. And for sure I could have used the money. I don’t normally throw money away.

But still – feeling bad about the loss, beating my self up for being daft enough to keep it in my back pocket where it – apparently – very easily could fall out, imagining all the cool stuff I could have done with it and filling my head with remorse for what will not be… none of that would bring the money back, would it? All it would do would be to keep me in a shitty state of mind.

And I’m not in a shitty state of mind. Am not inclined to push myself into one either. That will come when it comes. And you know what, next time something like this happens to me, my state of mind will greatly influence the way I relate to it. Had I been in a shitty state of mind when I made the discovery, I would have been filled with shame for what I had done, beating myself up over it. But I’m not! And it feels great.

Cause here’s the thing: the state of mind I am currently in, influences the way I perceive the world. If I’m low, the world seems like a shitty place. And that’s how I’ll respond to what happens to me. If I’m high, the world is on my side, and ain’t nothing gonna get me down.

”Oh, so just keep your self in a good state of mind then” you might think? That’s just it though: I can’t control my state of mind. I can’t decide to go from one state to another. It just happens. But knowing that it just happens, knowing that mechanism exist and how it works means I can observe my reactions, drop below them to realise what state of mind I’m in, and from there, perhaps make more sensible decisions. Like refraining from talking, texting, emailing or writing while I am in a really bad state of mind, for instance. Nothing good’s gonna come out of that, I promise. Not until my state of mind shifts.

20140519-205945.jpg

And it will. Sooner or later. Knowing it’s a state of mind might just help a new thought come into my head, and in a second, my state of mind can shift. Have you ever experienced this instant shift?