Minute by minute

my thoughts on making the most out of all of life's minutes…

…my first step is kicking out the roommate who lives in my head

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I’m going to kick out the roommate who lives in my head.

I don’t like her anymore.

I’ve outgrown her.

She is not helping me grow.

Do you have a roommate who lives inside your head? 

Mine talks non-stop.  From the moment I wake up until I hit the pillow at night – she is constantly yammering on and on.  Sometimes she even wakes me up in the middle of the night to nag me about things from my day.

The roommate who lives inside my head is my best friend and my worst enemy.  She lives in fantasy worlds that she creates – worlds that will never happen.  Like winning the lottery or having me lose an amazing amount of weight with no effort and in no time or having my business succeed over night that I’m in a whirlwind of things to do and I amazingly handle it all with no problem and still manage to get homemade dinner on the table.  She creates scenarios that are so unreal, yet they suck so much energy out of me.

She is my biggest defender in situations where I feel defensive or that I’ve been wronged.  She could get into a pretty good smack-down with the best that Jerry Springer could throw at her.  She relives situations over and over again until the reality is probably distorted.  And then she brings them up again.  She won’t shut up about it!

She replays comments I have said and makes me doubt them, questioning my motives and my intelligence.  She creates situations about family and friends where somehow at the end of it I end up depressed, sad, lonely, pissed off and just feeling yucky.  One time she had all my family, my two sons and my husband, killed in a car accident.  It left me crying real tears and sad for hours.  WHY does she do this?  WHY is this necessary.  Do I need to imagine what my life would be like without my family?  NO  – I don’t need to imagine that.  I don’t want to imagine that.

Another time she had my mom and my sister gang up on me about something and I was so pissed off I didn’t want to talk with either of them for days.  Talk about WTF!  Shut up, I tell you – shut up!!!

Other times, she can write the best blogs, ones that will go viral the minute I hit publish – yet when I sit down to write – she is nowhere to be seen, leaving me with an empty brain wondering what to write.

I’m tired of her.  She won’t shut-up.  She is zapping my energy, my creative juices, my soul.  She just keeps talking!!!

This is a bad segue – but stick with me…..

I recently listened to Dan Harris’ (ABC News) book – 10% Happier.  In it, he talks candidly about how he has struggled with his ego and his motivation and drive to get to where he is today in the very competitive world of TV News.  He talks about his love of being on TV, his drug use, his addiction to adrenaline and how it ultimately lead to an on-air panic attack.

Through his research of various stories, he started to investigate the power of meditation.  And over time, he, himself started to practice meditation.  And over time, he started to feel more focused.

Here’s where I make the connection….

I’ve dabbled in meditation.  Unlike Harris – I am/was not skeptical of its benefits.  But I admit, I’ve never fully gotten into it to reap said benefits.  I guess I didn’t fully understand what I was trying to accomplish.

But Dan explains it in his book – – meditation quiets the mind.  I never thought about quieting the roommate who lives inside my head.  To be honest, I didn’t even realize she was there – she was just always there.

In the last couple of weeks since finishing his book, I’ve been making a deliberate effort to quiet my mind.  I’ve been making a conscious effort to quiet the roommate who lives inside my head.  She is not helpful, she is not useful, her comments are not worthy of my time and energy.

It’s hard shutting her up.  Sometimes, I literally have to shake my head and say “STOP!”  “I don’t want to hear about this.”

I’ve been trying really hard to just listen and to notice the things around me as I’ve been trying to shut up and shut out my roommate from taking over my thoughts.

What’s that old saying by George Washington? “It is better to be alone than in bad company.”  

I’m going to try to find some ways and some time to dedicate to meditating.  After reading 10% Happier, I’m intrigued.  I want to quiet my mind, become more focused and 10% Happier.  My first step is kicking out the roommate who lives in my head.  She is gone, she is not welcomed anymore.

What about you – have you ever noticed the voices in  your head talking and talking and talking?  I’d love to hear your thoughts.

~Amy

 

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Author: amymunns

Finding more minutes in your day. Specializing in time management, goal setting, prioritizing tasks for small business, busy professionals and active families.

6 thoughts on “…my first step is kicking out the roommate who lives in my head

  1. Yup I have one and she is not very nice. She rarely tells me how awesome I am or how well I am doing. Honestly, she isn’t very nice to anyone else either. But I have cultivated a friend for her, who reminds me to be patient, who has a kind word for both me and others. While I haven’t been successful at shutting her up, it does help to listen to her friend too.

    I love meditation and wish I did it more. I took a class in grad school on it. I just pulled three books from that class off my bookshelf (you can borrow if you’d like). The best one is a small little book by the master Thich Nhat Hahn.

    Thanks for writing about this. I feel inspired to start meditating again. I LOVE the feeling of a quiet, calm mind!

    • Thank you for your words, Sally. My roommate isn’t very nice either and I’m ashamed many times of the thoughts that she can conjure up – – in reality, they are my thoughts. I want it to stop. I would love to read one or all of your books.

  2. I’m working on figuring out this mindfulness stuff right now. I have told my voice to shut up plenty, but that just makes her more insolent and tantrum-y.

    The best analogy I have heard was from Dr. Lissa Rankin. She said that her inner voice is like a toddler. She’s allowed in the car, but she has to stay safely strapped into her car seat, not in the driver’s seat. Now I try to say things like “I understand that you’re scared of the bad things that can happen, but I’ve got control of this. I don’t need you now.” It doesn’t always work, but it’s getting easier.

    • That’s awesome Sonya. I like the analogy of the toddler. And not allowing her in the driver’s seat. That’s great. I will check out Dr. Lissa Rankin.

  3. Oh, Amy, I am going through exactly the same thing lately! That inner voice is soooooooo harmful! I’ve been reading Pema Chodron’s When Things Fall Apart, which, of course, talks about meditating. I’ve been trying to slow down, and practice meditation and be self-compassionate about my flub-dub attempts. Check out any of her books, or anything by Thich Nhat Hahn, or … just do it. Thanks for this!

  4. Thanks Maria. Sally mentioned Thich Nhat Hahn too – I will check him (or her?) out. Being self-compassionate. That sounds nice.

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