I read your stuff and other similar stuff because I have a lot of pressure at my job. You said people “live in their thinking.” But I’m not getting what you mean with that. Could I get a clarification on that please, sir?
Cool. Thanks for asking. Let’s take a look at this “pressure” you’re under. What exactly is ‘pressure?’ It’s the sensation you get when you use your power of thought to assess the amount to be done, which you then compare to your deadline, and your brain calculates something like: you’re trying to fit 75 marbles into a 50 marble jar. So you can say you’re reacting to the “reality” of the situation, but your sense of reality is formed by what you’re thinking about. That is your life experience.
The chemical reaction of anxiety (aka pressure) is created in your mind by thinking about a future that has not yet happened. For all you know in one hour the boss could call and say there’s been a mistake, we’re adding a bunch of jar-space, we’re all good for marbles. That could happen. So the pressure isn’t about the actual situation because we won’t know what that is until we get to the deadline.
It’s important that you recognize that the ‘pressure’ is generated as biochemistry stemming from your thoughts about what might happen. That’s pretty ephemeral. If that’s your only barrier, then relaxing and being happier starts to look easier and easier, doesn’t it?
Do you follow sports? Whether you do or you don’t, I’ll let you in on a well-known fact: the superstars are always intensely passionate about the game. They always have this zeal and you can somehow sense their intense desire to win. This comes from wanting to engage with every aspect of the sport. Despite the fact that they get checked twice as hard, they still excel.
There is a drive that emerges from their passionate desire to understand what they are doing more completely than others. They always want to know more. So rather than having minds busy with egocentric thoughts about their own comfort or status, elite athletes are constantly trying to pick up new skills to employ in their general pursuit of excellence. We can be like that too, with our lives.
Forget thinking about what will happen around the work you’re doing. Just focus on the work itself, marble by marble. If there are 75 marbles and you have a 50 marble jar then write the appropriate memo outlining your concern and define when the situation will become critical, and then get back to work. Don’t think about anything that doesn’t put marbles in jars.
If you want the pressure to lower as a way to prove that our thinking creates our reality, then stop thinking and start observing. Because there’s a whole world going on, and there’s cool discoveries being made every day. We cam immerse ourselves in that and be invigorated and ready for a challenge. Or we can do the opposite and build pressure by over-considering our own narrow view of reality.
Observe. As an activity. Just observe. No yakking. No self-talk. Just observing. No judgment. No opinion. No comment. Just observing. Remove the filter of You. Just Be present and absorb. It’s how y9u learned to talk, which is a remarkable skill. So clearly the headspace that allows that is a beautiful place to spend your day.
Have a great one. Make it that way. Turn your concerns into grace. It’s in you to do.
A serious childhood brain injury lead Scott to spend his entire life meditating on the concepts of thought, consciousness, reality and identity. It made others as strange to him as he was to them. When he realized people were confused by their own over-thinking, Scott began teaching others to understand reality. He is currently CBC Radio Active’s Wellness Columnist, as well as a writer, speaker and mindfulness instructor based in Edmonton, AB where he still finds it strange to write about himself in the third person.