• Dr. Sonal Keswani

YOU ARE NOT YOUR THOUGHTS (but you can be if you wanted to)

Updated: Dec 8, 2018

Growing up I was always a bubbly kid. I happened to lose that spark sometime right after the 10th grade. I’m not fully sure what changed, but I was suddenly disinterested in everything, I didn’t see the purpose of being on this planet, I was sleeping for most part of the day, skipping all my classes at college and in general isolating myself from the world. I didn’t think it was a big deal because it wasn’t that I wasn’t happy. I just really disliked being around people, disliked the continuous thoughts in my head and couldn’t pragmatically see the point of being here. I just wanted to shut it all out. It all felt like too much. Being alone or asleep seemed like the only time I could have some sort of solace.

Hiding from the world became my operative state of being. Fast forward to 8 years later. I was attending a local festival in my city where someone while giving a talk asked me to consider this- What if 99.9% of your thoughts, feelings and emotions don’t actually belong to you? And if you could just ask for every thought feeling and emotion that pops for the next 3 days – Who does this belong to? And return it to sender, what might that create? - I thought well that’s crazy who else would it possibly belong to? But honestly at that point I was willing to try anything. I had nothing to lose. And for the next 3 days I did exactly that.

Here’s what I realised:

1. We are far more aware than we give ourselves credit for. In those 3 days never once was anything mine except for once!! (When the heaviness was from eating too much food)

2. I had a level of peace and calm that I had never experienced. (Maybe sometimes with meditation, but this was so much better cos it was instant)

3. Where has this been all my life? I mean I could’ve completely avoided that constant struggle and overwhelm with mind chatter all these years?

4. What I was truly hiding from was not people, it was my awareness of them, their worlds, their judgements and this reality. (which frankly can be a bit painful at times)

5. My awareness wasn’t wrong or a problem. I just didn’t have the tools to manage it effectively.

6. Now that I have the tools, I no longer have to be at the effect of things. I can navigate this reality with an openness and confidence in contrast to the hiding and crumbling I was doing.

7. Now that I didn’t see me as a someone who had to constantly be protected, as a victim or didn’t constantly assume that the world is out to get me (and even if it is, I knew I could deal with it) I could actually go beyond my own needs and look at how I could be a contribution to the people around me.

8. When I could be the contribution I was, that’s when I felt most like myself, happy and grateful for being alive than I ever have.

9. I was empowered in a way no one and nothing could take away from me.

It’s funny how that 1 simple tool made me go from not wanting to be on this planet (okay it wasn’t that dramatic, but you get what I mean :D) for the last 8 years to actually choosing to live. What if we don’t have to be here, but what if we could CHOOSE to? And enjoy the fuck of out of while we do. It’s all just a choice 😊

Ps: If you’d like more clarity on this tool, here’s a video

#accessconsciousness #purpose #depression #whodoesthisbelongto #mentalhealth #socialanxiety #ADD #ADHD #OCD

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