Process your thoughts

By Dr. Ajit

Despite our best efforts to live a healthy life, we still find ourselves suffering from health problems, particularly stress and anxiety. It leaves many of us to ask if is ever possible to be happy and healthy? The answer to this is simple. Even though we focus on many physical factors to maintain our health, we give little attention to the most important component of our body, the mind.

From the day we are born we are provided with all the means of life and taught how to fulfil these daily needs ourselves, whether it is shelter, food, warmth, or clothing. However, no one tells us how to deal with the mind or how to nourish and support it. When we live our daily lives by ignoring the needs of the mind a disharmony between the mind and body takes place, which hampers our ability to attain optimum balance.

Unfortunately, western medicine doesn't talk much about this important component of our body and doesn't put much emphasis on the impact mind has on our wellbeing. Thankfully, Ayurveda talks in great depth about the importance of the mind and role it plays in the disease process. Ayurveda tells us that the mind has specific qualities and characteristics and just as we have specific daily routines to eliminate toxins from our body, we have specific routines to eliminate toxins from the mind to keep it in a balanced state and maintain harmony between mind and body.

We all understand that during our daily activities we come across various situations. Some might be good, some bad. Some can be stressful. Some can bring happiness or sorrow and many can bring anxiety and frustration. These are all known as our emotions. Each emotion relates to one's own specific causes. It is important to process these emotions on a daily basis because if we don't process them, they can go to the inner part of the mind and sit there. When one goes to sleep and enters a sub-conscious state, these emotions become active. According to the qualities of these emotions, an imprint is left on our body and nervous system. For example, if one has emotions of anxiety and worry, they can impact on the body in that form. The resultant impact of this situation is that despite a person having 8 -10 hours' sleep, rather than being in a state of relaxation our body and nervous system remain in an active mode so we wake up feeling exhausted and fatigued rather than rested and calm. We all are aware that sleep is when the body repairs itself from the wear and tear of daily living. If our body is in an active state during this time, the repair work does not take place and slowly the body's immune system can get affected. 

To prevent this process, it is very important that we process our thoughts on a daily basis. Before going to bed, no matter how busy you are, sit for 10 minutes to review the day. Close your eyes and review the whole day, pausing on each event that has arisen, good and bad and reflect on your role. Were your pleased with your actions during the day, responding appropriately or did you respond to a situation in a reactive or hurtful way. If you identify that you have reacted the wrong way in a particular situation, identify it and make a commitment to amend your behaviour for next time. Also make a commitment to apologise to anyone you may have hurt next time you see them.

For example, you are an employer and you come out of your office and see one of your employees sitting and doing nothing. You get upset and say a few nasty words to the employee and continue with your day's work. But when you get home and sit and review the day you realise that you weren't really upset with the employee but were upset and angry from an earlier phone call. When you came out of the office you let your frustration out on the employee, who had just finished a job and was getting ready for the next.

In his situation it becomes clear that it was not the employee's fault. It was you who made an error in judgement. In this situation what will be my action/ I will make sure I will make myself aware that I must be careful in the future that such situation does not a rise and must learn to analyse the situation carefully so I don't repeat my mistake and secondly make a commitment that next morning when I see my employee I will say sorry to him.
By this process one is able to take pressure on your chest and on your consciousness of doing something wrong. The natural principle is that when one has done something wrong no matter how much one can pretend to oneself. Person will be very much aware that something has been done wrong by me and if that is not dealt with it will hound that person as a bad emotion. On the other hand, when one is able to recognise this reaction and be ready to face it or accept it that things will be better to him/her and they live in peace and harmony.

The principle of this routine is that whatever we do during the day we are always aware that my action is correct or not. One can't hide anything from our consciousness. If one does not follow this daily routine the wrong doings of the day can have a negative impact on one's consciousness or it can manifest in the form of deep emotions and result in ailments at the physical level as high blood pressure, anxiety, stress, sleep disturbances, insomnia and depression, panic attacks or in mental disturbances.

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