It is still dark. I open one eye and look at the bedside clock. 4:00 am.
This is the danger zone. The most perilous time of the night. Why? Because the engines in my brain are ready to start up, revving , roaring and racing down the track with my thoughts. All the doubts and demons are there. Waiting for the starters gun to scream down that track!
If I have learned anything in my life, it is that what I hear in my brain at 4 am is a Voice I should not listen to. The Voice is almost always negative.
“What did you do that for? You’re too old, not good enough, not ready, not smart enough, quick enough…..” The Voice picks up speed and now its roaring down the track at 200 kph! And now it has other Voices racing with it. A Committee of Voices.
That my friends is the Brain 500. Over the years I have learned I cannot let the Voice utter so much as a chirp. I must turn over, start a meditation and take myself to my place of peace and calm; on my horse in the forest.
It is not long before I am back to sleep. But how do you accomplish this?
Book your worries in for a later time. Tell yourself you can think or worry about this later at say….10:30 am. And make a booking for 15 minutes at that time. By the appointed time the sun will be up and the day will have restored your faith in yourself. Your worries can be addressed rationally.
Learn some sort of mental meditation. This does not require sitting in a full lotus position or anything like that. Find a meditation that involves focusing on calm breathing.If you pray find a prayer you like and repeat it over and over. You can also incorporate a visual of a place where you are calm and happy.
Laugh at the Voice. When the Voice reaches the point where it is telling you things like : “That headache you had today. That could be a brain tumor!” That is when the Brain 500 has slipped a gear and the Voice is spinning in a total unreality. Laugh at its’ absurdity and continue with your meditation.
Remember the Wisdom of the Animals. My horse Biasini does not lay awake worrying. about the past or the future. He lives in the moment. We need to try to do that too.
*Indy 500 photo: Hungry Fan*