I use Headspace to practice mindfulness. In one of their introductory videos, they offer an analogy as to how approach one’s thoughts: treat your mind like a highway with the cars whizzing by as your thoughts. The same way those cars come and go, let your thoughts do the same: no need to dwell on any in particular. This helps keep one’s focus on the breath.
Here’s the video:
Recently, I was meditating while sitting in my car, parked in a lot facing a highway. As I started the session, I noticed that the environment in front of me was like a story coming to life. Like watching Harry Potter for the first time after reading the books. But a little more abstract than that. An analogy that turned into reality! I was able to visualize thoughts coming and going because I could see (session begins with eyes open) and hear their real counterparts coming and going. When a thought would pop into my mind, I would associate that with the well-timed revving of an engine as it zips past the parking lot.
If you practice mindfulness: next time you see a place to park near a busy road, give it a shot and let me know if you have the same revelation! 😄 💭