Saturday 28 January 2017

Mind! Keep out of the way - my thoughts on speaking at Mind.Simplified

It is crazy o'clock on a Sunday morning yet I'm dressed and out on a Northern line train, somewhere south of Edgware, heading to my debut talk at a conference. Surprisingly, I am feeling excited and quite psyched up, so I decide to broadcast a Facebook live. I switch it on and say a couple of things like good morning and I move on to give a taster of what I'm going to talk about. But I go blank. I dry up and have absolutely no words. I pause and nothing comes to me. I can hear the tumbleweed blowing past. Completely panicked I stop recording.

Now I'm worried. It's about 3 hours before I need to speak, on a stage, in front of about 150 people. I'm awake way too early in the morning for any day of the week, especially a Sunday.  I can feel the nerves taking hold of my stomach and I don't even have a script as I am deliberately going for a spontaneous presentation style. I start frantically scribbling. Argh! Help.

Actually, that's not quite how it went last Sunday. Somehow as the anxiety was growing, I was able to, almost from a slight distance, observe the situation and see it for what it was. It was a perfect example of how the 3 Principles of Mind, Thought and Consciousness play out constantly in our lives. I had my starting example and a great teachable experience to share at the conference.

So what was the conference and why was I speaking at it? The conference was called Mind.Simplified and I was one of the speakers and organisers. It was my graduation and the final stage of my journey on the One Thought Institute to qualify as a Three Principles Practitioner. Over the last year, I have been learning how to share glimpses of clarity from my personal life with others. One core concept is that we all have tremendous innate wisdom that allows us to know everything we need and do amazing things. In light of this, I aimed to use my speech as a practical demonstration of how we can access this intelligence in real life. In keeping with this objective, I avoided too much planning of what I would say. I had a few ideas and writing the summary was a good frame of reference but that is how I got to my slightly panicked situation on the tube.

So what did I see and what is the general lesson we can all learn from my experience. Our brains are like a bowl at an unlimited salad bar. At any one time, there is a limit to what the bowl can hold. If we go up for more with things left in the bowl, there is less we can take and the flavours may carry over. By eating everything or throwing away the waste, we are able to make a fresh start.

Salad bowl

Similarly, the buffet of thoughts constantly come and go through our minds. However, if we hold on to and / or multiply specific thoughts they take up space in the bowl of our brains. The more residue the less new thoughts and the higher the risk of contamination. The best way to keep our thoughts flowing freely is to keep our mind clear.

I was able to see that I was doing and dwelling on a lot of thinking; that I was tired, nervous, unprepared and probably going to embarrass myself. All of this was filling me up and there was little room to recognise the insightful thoughts. When I paused, the understanding that I have been exploring in depth over the last year, worked itself on me. I saw the concepts behind my experience and their impact diminished. Just as when you get scared watching a horror movie and all it takes is to catch sight of the cinema setting for the fear to lose its impact. No action was needed.

In fact, the truth is that when we have thoughts that we don't want and we try to get rid of them, the efforts we make increase our focus on them and they got stronger. All that needs to be done is recognise the flowing nature of thought and let our minds do their natural thing.

If we keep out of our minds way, new thought will come along.

As this is my first post, I'd love to hear your comments. I hope this post was relatable and useful. I am very open to all feedback that can help me ensure that future posts are better understood and more relatable. Thank you for reading.