A couple of months ago, a few friends and I were out to a 3-days outing. Idea was to pause, disconnect with the so-called real world for a while and explore nature at its best.
We agreed not to bring anything which might distract us. So we did not bring any digital instrument like iPhones, Blackberry, Laptops and Music Players etc.
It was a pleasant morning on the third day. One of my journalist friends who is considered as one of the top journalists in the local news industry told me that she was feeling down, restless and started feeling headache. She further opened up her heart saying she cannot live without music. And the reason for feeling down was its absence!
She has been listening to music for 15-16 hours a day since her childhood. From the age of Walkman to iPod, one thing has not changed – a lubricious relationship between her ears and earphones!
When she wakes up, the first thing she seeks is her iPod. While driving to her office, she needs music. Even while she’s doing her day job her relationship with music is unchanged; it’s on and on and on.
She believed that if the music is off, she would no more be able to perform at her best. Somehow her mind was conditioned to believe that.
It was the music that playing with her; not she playing the music!
It also happens with many of us. We negatively condition our minds in different ways. For example:
- I cannot perform well in my job if I am not offered an external training.
- Now that I own a C-class Sedan Car, I cannot drive my old small car.
- I cannot lead well if I am not given a leadership position.
- I cannot…I cannot…I cannot.
Now there are two things about it; One bad and the other, good.
- Bad thing: Negative conditioning is like Cancer.
- Good thing: There’s a cure for the same.
So I spent about 30 minutes with her to discuss the following. The intention of the discussion was to make her able to live life powerfully; beyond reasons; live life the way we dream of. Here’s what we discussed:
- Be in the present moment: Most people suffer because they either live in their past (how cool were the days when we were in the school) or they live in their future (I’ll enjoy life when I’ll have this, this and that.) What they forget is the current moment. What they forget is, “Past is something which doesn’t exist and even in the future, future will remain future!”)
- Unconditionally love yourself: Love yourself the way you are and the way you’re not. Each of us is gifted with at least one unique ability. Find that out. Remember, you are what you believe. And once you have an abundance of love inside you, you’ll be able to give it to the world which eventually will come back to you with interest.
- Eliminate reasoning from the self-talk: Be unreasonable. The reasoning is being in the past while being unreasonable means opening up the realm of imaginations. Remember what Einstein said, “Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere.”
- Take divorce with your ‘Act’: Your act is your fixed way of being in a given situation. It is your biggest limitation. You cannot be anything but your actions in those situations. Let them go. Start doing something else no matter how effete or small that might be. Just start doing things differently. Sometimes, divorce is a good thing!
- Choose Your Response: Victor Frankl said in his famous book Man’s Search for Meaning, “Man’s last freedom is his freedom to choose how he will react in any given situation.” When you become unreasonable, when you start visualizing things out of your imagination and not only from your knowledge, you increase your ability to respond by leaps and bounds. You are at the source of the matter; not the effect.
At first, she argued, screamed, felt very uncomfortable listening to the above. Then she became quiet and agreed to affirm what I had to say. So I gave her a piece of paper with the following text written and asked her to read it daily. Once in the morning and once before going to bed.
My Daily Avouchment
“Regardless of what happens to me, I choose to be happy. I make the best out of available resources. I’m not what my possessions are. I’m free. I’m full of power. I radiate positive energy and the world of people around me is enlightened of that. I’m an excellent human being. I’m my own favorite. I inspire life in me and around. I have come out of my fixed way of being. I choose to be the best version of myself; beyond the reasons. I don’t allow anything or any situation to control my mood. I choose to be responsible for my choice. I choose…I choose…I choose.”
After about a month, she came to me to express the power she got by practicing the daily avouchment. She also said that she chooses to play the music. Now she’s choosing when she wants to listen to music and she is happier than ever. She also showed me a draft of an article which is going to be published in the ‘Mental Fitness’ section of the news magazine she is working for. That article is based on her own story and its title is, “Play The Music, Don’t Let It Play With You!”