By MomGAL Expert, Lin Eleoff
I am becoming more thoughtless. It’s just another one of my great qualities!
Thoughtlessness sets me free. Want some?
I experienced pure, unadulterated thoughtlessness this past week on my trip to California. I traveled from the ocean at Huntington Beach to the mountains of Lake Tahoe.
There’s nothing like the roar of the Pacific or a couple of bad-ass mountains to get you all out of everyone else’s business. Heck, I even stayed out of my own business.
Thoughtlessness is right up there with selfishness when it comes to my own personal style of self-care. My motto: it’s all about me. Always. Always. Always.
Thoughtlessness makes me a better friend. A better wife. A better mother. I’m even nicer to my dog when I practice thoughtlessness.
Do you know this feeling state? It’s not about forgetting someone’s birthday. And it’s most certainly not about getting lost in your thoughts. So what the heck is it?
I cannot tell you.
I’m not being a smart-ass when I say that, even though I’m such a smart-ass. There just aren’t any words to describe thoughtlessness. But I’m going to give it a try. Because I love you.
Becoming thoughtless isn’t just about having no thought. It’s a feeling state. And yet it transcends all feeling, all emotion, all sensation.
It’s kind of like being a rock. Or a horse. You pick.
If you’re still with me, I love you even more. Because you obviously have a sense that being a rock or a horse would be a good thing. That’s because rocks and horses, even trees, dogs and elephants, are completely thoughtless. They ‘do without doing’, as my buddy Lao Tzu likes to say. He also likes to say things like: “Those who know do not speak, those who speak do not know” and “every thousand mile journey begins with a peanut butter cup”… or something like that. You should read his book, The Tao te Ching. It’s freedom in a book.
Here at Mom Gets a Life we often talk about the importance of self care: putting yourself first; honoring your essential self; saying no. Self care is a scary concept for many moms. And yet, it’s the most important thing we can ever do for ourselves. The most important thing. Ever.
If you’re new to the idea of putting yourself first, as in, putting your children second, (does the mere suggestion of that make you weak in the knees?) you may want to start with practicing thoughtlessness. To do that, you will need to plan a get-a-way. A five-minute get-a-way. Yes, that’s all.
First, find a rock, or a horse, or a tree, (or an elephant if you can find one). The idea is focus on something in nature… it can even be an ant. Now, put all of your attention on it. All of it. Notice all the parts of it, without thinking. Don’t put words to what you see. Just look, without looking for anything in particular.
Next, you are going to become that thing. Become the rock. Become the tree. Look outward from that place of being the thing you have become. Look around you as if you were the horse. Can you see from the eye of the elephant?
The most amazing thing about thoughtlessness, for me, is that there is no judgment. You cannot judge a rock. And rocks do not judge. Horses do not think or pretend, and they most certainly will not ever say yes when they mean no. Have you ever had a horse ‘join up’ with you? It’s magical, because you know it’s a pure and clean yesssssssss. And a horse will only say yes to you when you have slipped into thoughtlessness, that place of being without fear, without judgment, without words.
Welcome to the right side of your brain. It’s very peaceful there. As well as magical and creative. This is where your inspiration comes from.
This is where you find freedom.
Now go back to being a mom, from a place of thoughtlessness. No judgment, no pretending, no thing to get in the way of you and your family.
Rock on, mama!