Lennart, I decided he needs a blog post for himself. If you haven’t read my previous post About moving to Spain, I am talking about the voice of my mind who is constantly talking and offering opinions inside of me. It proved easier for me to name this voice, so Lennart it became.
As I said, Lennart has opinions about everything. Today for example he has been talking down on me about this blog. He goes like: Why do you write this, who do you think you are? Whatever you are writing is not relevant. What’s it about anyway? It’s such basic stuff, everyone gets this. It’s like writing about the snow being white. Who would be interested in reading that? And oh, do you really think you can write in english even though it’s not your native language? On and on, and on he goes.
Nowadays I can catch Lennart in my head pretty quickly, but that wasn’t always the case. If I look back at my life so far I realize that I have spent a large part of it not really aware of the actual frequency of him popping up and whispering (sometimes shouting) his opinions. And not only was I unaware, I also quite often followed him pretty blindly. That could look for example like this:
Lennart: Don’t quit your job, the money is good. So I stayed for too long in a job which wasn’t right for me anymore. Lennart: Don’t say out loud what you really feel because it might offend this person. So I kept quiet. Lennart: Don’t say that you feel lonely, no one likes negativity. So I acted cheerful. And so on.
Michael A. Singer makes a funny comparison when he writes in his book The untethered soul: The journey beyond yourself:
If somehow that voice managed to manifest in a body outside of you, and you had to take it with you everywhere you went, you wouldn’t last a day.
It made me laugh because I imagined walking around all day with Lennart as an actual person talking besides me. Michael is right, I truly wouldn’t last a day.
It turned out that I needed a lot of practise in awareness in order to catch the voice of my mind. Meditation proved to be a major key but more about that some other time. Once I heard it loud and clear, it was time to figure out step two. It seemed that I had two options: either I push the voice away or I let it be where it was. I tried to push it away many times (because this seemed like the easiest option) but it just kept turning up. So I chose option two and let it be.
Once I let him be and observed him closer, I realized that Lennart never acts in my best interest even though it seems he wants what’s good for me. Instead I saw that he acts out of fear. Fear of the unknown, fear of being hurt, fear of loneliness. So what to do? The key to me is what Mr. Singer describes so beautifully:
Instead of fighting the mind, just don’t participate in it. When you see the mind telling you how to fix the world and everyone in it in order to suit yourself, just don’t listen (…) stop putting your whole heart and soul into the mind as if it were your saviour and protector.
Today when Lennart pops up, I alternate between drop-kicking him and giving him a big hug. Because I think he needs both. I also do not let him make executive decisions in my life anymore and I will keep on practising awareness to make sure that I am living my truth, every single day.
PS Lennart really doesn’t like me writing this but I can’t help wondering: what’s the name of the voice of your mind and how does it sabotage you?
Photo: Jordan Whitfield – unsplash.com