Shorten The Storm - Grasshopper
Can’t get that thought out of your head? Notice it!
Thinking goes on all day long without our permission. Our mind has a mind of its own. It thinks up a storm, and we are constantly attempting to weather it when we hunker down with our thoughts. That never works.
Think of bothersome thoughts like thunderstorms. They have a loud and threatening impact for a short period of time. What’s the best way to deal with a storm?
Reminds me of a story . . . I was attending a managers’ convention and the speaker was addressing settling disputes between people we managed. He said that once you have each person’s position, it’s counterproductive to dig deeper into each’s story. That just brings up more of the same arguments, only in different suits of clothes. He went on to say as long as you remain on the periphery, the longer the uproar will go on. He said that our job was to “shorten the storm.”
Reminds me of an application of his teaching years later. I had two employees that didn’t like each other. They were having a war of words behind the scenes about a woman they were both interested in. The argument spilled its way out into the workplace and was causing some havoc. I asked my boss to call a meeting with him, me, and the two of them. They both denied that they had done the things the other had alleged. I had hard evidence they were both lying. I didn’t bring it up. I just said, “Gentlemen, I have enough drama going on in my own life that I don’t have time for your high school play.” My boss added, “If this continues, I will fire both of you.” End of meeting. End of storm.
We shorten the storm in our head by noticing it. As I said, “our mind has a mind of its own.” It will prattle on ad nauseum until we notice it. The part of us that notices is not the mind. It’s the observer of the mind. When you engage your observer to put a spotlight on your thinker, you become an unemotional arbiter. A noticed thought is an exposed thought – one that can’t stand up to observation. Observation frees you from mental aggravation.
Once you grasp the concept that you have a thinker and observer, you’ll spend less time arguing in your head by “shortening the storm” instead.
All the best,
Hear the recorded version here.
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