I was listening to a podcast this morning, and the host made the point that with COVID and lockdown, many of us are suffering with stress and depression because of our self identification with our jobs, our self appointed roles. And that’s a very long sentence! In more ways than one!
But the point struck home with me. More to do with my job, but I guess the point to be made is easier with the following.
At points in my life I was a punk, I was a skater, amongst other things and I self identified with these “tribes”.
I still listen to some punk, but listen to a lot of other genres too, but I’m a lot older now and have no need to self identify with that tribe. No more scene politics, no scene police, just enjoying music for what it is.
It’s not that I don’t care, it’s that I’ve chosen not to self identify with something that causes conflict, is that a better way of saying it?
This could apply equally to football, to clubs, associations, area codes, whatever.
Ego is the enemy.
“It is our own opinions that disturb us. Take away these opinions then, and resolve to dismiss your judgment about an act as if it were something grievous, and your anger is gone.” – Marcus Aurelius
How lucky are dogs! “They have no preconceived notions of their limitations”! And that is exactly who we should see our own lives! Children have no concept of their limitations until it’s drummed into them, but imagine the possibilities without limitations!
Because your own strength is unequal to the task, do not assume that it is beyond the powers of man; but if anything is within the powers and province of man, believe that it is within your own compass also. – Marcus Aurelius
Of course if your strength is unequal right now, that becomes a goal to work towards so you can achieve your aim, but limitations are in the “enemy mind”.
The more I thought about the previous post, the more my mind realised what a huge concept it really is, the mind is AWESOME!
“We are more often frightened than hurt; and we suffer more in imagination than in reality.” – Seneca
So much suffering is self created, it’s never happened, it may never happen, but that fear can stop you from doing something great. It can stop you from trying some crazy new food. It can stop you from taking the great job you could so so well in. It could stop you from living your dreams. It can stop you from living up to your true potential.
Your imagination can create your reality. I’ve been a self created victim of thinking negatively in the past, we probably all have. People have told me in the past I couldn’t do something, told me that I was not capable, and in a moment of fear I’d absorbed this bullshit, and held myself back. I HELD MYSELF BACK. Think about it. Nobody physically held me back from doing it, my imagination had created a negative situation and I’d scared myself into inaction. “We are more often frightened than hurt” (and the physical hurt would have been so much better for me, because I could have taken it as a learning experience)
Our minds are so powerful, but that power can be for good or evil.
“There is nothing good or bad, but thinking makes it so” – Shakespeare
In other words, your thoughts on any situation can create suffering or joy.