The Recovering Farmer

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Regular Maintenance

Anyone that owns a car knows that regular maintenance is important. Okay. Let me rephrase that. Most people understand this. For some reason I don’t fall into that category. I will remember to gas up the car when needed. I occasionally get the oil changed. That is about the extent of my maintenance. I have a dreaded fear of garages because I know it will always cost a lot of money. Call it what you may. Denial or avoidance.

As human beings living our lives we also need to be cognizant of regular maintenance. I would suggest that applies to our physical bodies but also to our mental and emotional well-being. That comes easier for some than others, depending on our tolerance to what life throws our way. I have referred to our emotional gas tank in the past. What does it take to keep it full? Sometimes as simple as a few minutes of meditation, a day of relaxation, a week of vacation, or various other ways and means to get rid of stress or negative energy that we ingest on a regular basis. Simply put, we need ways to find a life balance. But for some of us it sometimes requires more. A professional that can guide us back to a path of contentment.

Shortly after the start of 2016 I found myself sliding down a slope I did not want to be on. Things did not feel right. I had memories of the same thing happening last year and it scared me. I did not want to go back there. So the decision was made to seek help.

I had my first appointment last week. Had an interesting conversation with the therapist. She wanted to get to know me, find out about my life, to help her identify where I needed fixing. Although it was a short conversation I identified things in my life that had shaped who I was that I had not really been aware of before. Certainly got me thinking.

After a while she asked me what it was that I really wanted from her. I suspect the question came because she found out what type of work I do and the training I have had. I think she probably felt that I was well aware of what I needed. And I probably was. Perhaps I just needed someone to whom I could verbalize many of my thoughts, my fears, my wants and desires. Someone I could trust and feel safe in sharing with.

I suggested to her that first and foremost I needed to take control of my mind, my stinking thinking as it were. She responded rather quickly that she had an easy trick for that. Her answer almost discouraged me. I had heard of so many things in the past which just never seemed to work for me. I knew I was guilty of giving up to easily. And yet, I was ready to try almost anything.

She asked me to close my eyes and think of something, anything. She then said I should think about that till she clapped her hands and then I was to drop my tongue. Sounds weird, I know, but hear me out. We did that once. She asked me what I noticed. Quite frankly I wasn’t sure what I was supposed to notice. So we did it again. And after I had dropped my tongue and opened my eyes I got it. When I dropped my tongue my mind went clear. No longer was I thinking about what I had been thinking about. It worked.

Next time you are deep in thought about an issue take note of where your tongue is. You will find it is firmly placed against the roof of your mouth. She explained to me that research has shown that when you drop your tongue it is virtually impossible to think clearly about anything. I have tried it countless times since and like I say it works for me. Perhaps this is something that can work for you as well. Try it. Make it a good one.

“When you change the way you think, you can change the way you feel.”
David Burns

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