Do you ever have one of those days where something surfaces in your consciousness, but you don’t have the time to deal with it in the present moment?
If you are like most people, your knee-jerk reaction to a heavy, old thought pattern would probably be to try to just sweep it under the rug. Because that never works, most people end up ‘in a bad mood’, which just means that they haven’t yet applied compassion to whatever is currently causing them suffering in their own mind.
The good news is that once you are awake and aware of what irrational thought looks like and sounds like, you don’t have to let it wreck your mood or your day.
This is where knowing what I call ‘thought triage’ can come in handy. Triage is the act of sorting something on a priority basis. If you can learn to quickly identify and determine the nature of your irrational thought, it can help you decide how and when to handle it in your highest good.
Once a thought, or train of thoughts, is brought to your attention by your neutral observer, it is up to you to decide what to do with that information. Here are some options:
You might decide to allow the limiting train of thoughts to continue for a moment, and simply listen neutrally to gather more information about what you think or how you feel about a certain subject (I would definitely encourage using this approach if this were the first time this particular limiting idea had come to your attention). If you have the space and time, you might explore this line of thinking deeper to discover all of the associated limiting beliefs surrounding this idea, using the opportunity to squeeze as much irrationality out of your own consciousness as possible.
If you are in the middle of another commitment when you receive the red flag and begin to hear and observe a new negative line of thinking, you could acknowledge the thought with, ‘I hear you’ and let it know that you’ll address the issue at another time. You could then place that line of thinking on a shelf in the back of your mind and consciously focus your attention on more positive, supportive thoughts as you return to whatever task is at hand. To be diligent, you could write yourself a note so that you won’t forget to get back to it later when you have some alone-time.
If the red-flag is for a recurring limiting thought that has been brought to your attention in the past – one that you have already created a new, updated belief around – you could respond to that fear-thought in-the-moment by listening with compassion and then re-affirming your new belief. That might sound something like, ‘I hear you think you can’t do such-and-such, that you aren’t good enough. It’s Ok, I really hear that, and I want to remind you that I now know that I can do anything I set my mind to do. I absolutely have the ability to learn how. I am innately good, whole and worthy of succeeding.’
If you cannot come back to peace after acknowledging your irrationality, I recommend taking a short rest-room break to apply compassion liberally.
The goal with thought triage is to determine the best way to respond to your limiting thinking in-the-moment so that all irrationality that gets flagged gets addressed, while, at the same time, you are able to stay present and productive as you live your life. It is important to make the time to listen to whatever is present in your own consciousness – either in the now or later – because fear-based thoughts that go untended will simply resurface again and again until you heed them. If you’ve shelved anything throughout the day, do your best to keep your commitment to yourself to get back to it, so that you build self-trust as well as consistently clear and update your irrational beliefs.
The more efficiently you can care for your fear-thoughts, the sooner you will become liberated. Say, “I now acknowledge my irrationality and sort according to priority.”
Many Blessings of Joy and Vibrant Freedom
Action Step ~ Practice ‘thought triage’.
Declaration: “I am now acknowledging any and all irrational thinking that gets flagged to my attention. I am easily prioritizing my needs, addressing my issues and updating my beliefs in my own divine timing with compassion and grace. Every day is a beautiful day.”
Additional Support: Listen to this 9-minute closed-eye process on prioritizing your irrational thoughts as they surface for your attention: please refrain from driving while listening.