When in high school, we had Merchant of Venice as a play. The leading lady Portia says following lines to Nerissa which I still remember.
“It takes a good priest to practice what he preaches. For me, it’s easier to lecture twenty people on how to be good than to be the one person out of twenty who actually does good things.”
So, when I write something about being grateful, practicing mindfulness when having a troubled mind; it doesn’t mean that I am doing excellent in all, but yes it does mean that I am trying.
Trust me I am still struggling when situations are challenging.I forget gratitude and mindfulness. I become a victim and get trapped in that viscous negative cycle. I am not an expert but yes I keep trying. Sometimes I succeed and make through the day. So, I hope one day, with my small practices and efforts, all these things come naturally for me.So, I continue this post, in the same series of self-improvement.
Today post is about what your story. I was thinking in the same lines for last few days but then I read a blog post of Leo Babuta and his post is way better and easy to understand than what I would have written.
Here is the link for his post:: http://zenhabits.net/narrative/
And here is what he communicated in his post. Let’s try to tell ourselves a happy story.
“There’s a hidden mechanism that creates unhappiness, difficulty changing habits, relationship problems, frustration, anger and disappointment.
Barely anyone is aware of this hidden mechanism, even though it’s happening all the time, in all of us.
It’s the stories we tell ourselves.
We do it all day long: we tell ourselves a story about what’s happening in our lives, about other people, about ourselves. When I call them “stories” … that doesn’t mean they’re false, or that they aren’t based on the truth. It just means we’ve constructed a narrative based on our experiences, a perspective on the world around us, an interpretation of facts as we see them. Not false, but not necessarily the entire truth — just one perspective.
A different person could look at the same situation and tell a very different situation.
A few examples:
- You might have a story about how your boss is very supportive and praises you a lot, which means you are doing a good job and like your work environment, and this story makes you happy. Another person might look at the same situation and tell a story about how the work area is messy and people are always interrupting him and he’s tired and the clients are rude and smelly.
- You might be upset with your spouse because she was rude to you or didn’t clean up her messes for the last few days. Another person might have the same experience but tell themselves a story about how his spouse has been working hard at her job, has gone out of her way to cook a nice meal for you, and is tired and needs some comforting.
- You might have a story about how you keep procrastinating, keep failing at being disciplined, never stick to a workout routine. Another perspective might be that you have gotten some great things done despite getting distracted, you’ve been passionate about learning something and that’s taken a priority over work tasks you’re dreading, and you are tired and need some rest before you can tackle exercise with vigor.
Each of these examples have very different stories about the same situations — it’s about which details you pay attention to, and how you shape the narrative of those details.
Now, telling ourselves stories is natural — we all do it, all the time. There’s nothing wrong with it. But if we’re not aware of the stories we tell ourselves, we can’t understand how they shape our happiness, relationships, moods, and more.” …….Leo Babuta …
If you liked it, read more from his side http://zenhabits.net/narrative/.
Well the next steps he provides is about practicing mindfulness when we are trap in our own stories.
You can either follow that or you create your own story about the circumstances around you.
You create a positive story in those hard situations, you practice gratitude in any situation and believe it to be true.
All I am saying is to visualize your circumstances in a positive way and break current hardship or unwanted thought by practicing gratitude. Try to build a happy story and ignore all those negative things. Your story is/should be as perfect as the fairy tale. Just create it and believe it.
If you think that nothing is going right then just be grateful because you have/done following things.
- A roof over your head and a warm home/bed.
- You have eaten your food today.
- Have clean drinking water.
- People around you who care about you.
- Have your health.
And I am grateful for this internet and readers who read my post.
Thank you again Universe and everyone of you out there.