In-Between the Pages: Battle Field of the Mind

Ohio State Fair 5k 2016 (Photo: Shawn Ward)

I wasn’t sure I had anything left. They say when you mind shifts to telling you that it’s time to quit you really have spent 40% of what you actually have available. I think whoever said that was lying. I was having a hard time even finishing a simple 5k in 88 degree weather with a humidity factor above 80%. Even the slightest incline of rolling hills was painful and draining as I continued to run. It was everything I had to just make it from one shaded part of the run to the next. I should not have this issue as someone that runs a lot further than 3.1 miles daily, but there it was. I was done and glad to be at 3.1 when my Watch pinged me at the 5k mark. I gave in and stopped my run, I let my mind rule the day.

Sound familiar? It might not have been a race that you had to overcome, but you have had that moment where your greatest detractor and enemy is yourself. There was a story I read in a book by Joyce Meyer called Battle Field of the Mind where someone actually got locked in a freezer truck. It wasn’t long before their mind had convinced them that they were going to freeze to death soon and they were not going to escape. When the person was discovered several hours later, it was found that they were indeed dead. However, inside the trailer it never hit below 75 degrees, clearly not freezing. Their mind was so convinced that they were going to freeze to death, that it shut down the person’s body and literally killed him because it was convinced unchecked that it was going to expire.

“Life will beat you to your knees and keep you there if you let it.” — Stallone

We can all recall where our minds left unchecked literally “killed” our ambition or stole away from us our very goal we hoped to have achieved. How does that happen? The mind is indeed a powerful thing. Where our mind goes, so goes our energy.

Thankfully, it can work in reverse to our benefit as well. We can achieve whatever we set our mind to, as long as we keep the perspective needed to keep it in check to win that moment we aspire to. Easier said then done at times, but, we have to try to aspire to it or we won’t make it even to the half way point.

This post wasn’t meant to solve that for you today, it was meant to jar you out of your funk and put the choice to win back in your hands. There’s a huge reason why self-reflection and taking the time to check in with your thoughts is having a significant impact on some of the most successful people out there today. They are making and setting some of the highest examples of what truly winning can be and inroads towards creating the best version of themselves by just taking a minimal 5 minutes a day to check in with themselves.

Your challenge, take just a one minute breathing exercises a few times a day and just sit there listening to your breathing. Eyes open or closed doesn’t matter. Taking the time out to pause and reflect is the biggest point I want to make. Write down after that 1 minute session everything that was on your mind. What story does it tell you? Are you doing the most important work you could be? Are you being a servant to yourself/mind so you can be a better servant to others?

Training your mind right can be one of the greatest things you will face as an obstacle, but once you start to realize the value, one you will never ignore ever again.

I leave you with this from Tim Ferris:

“ We don’t rise to the level of our hope, but our training.” — Tim Ferris

I would really enjoy hearing from you what you discovered with just that simple breathing exercise. How can I help? Did it work? Is your path clearer to being your optimal self?

Thanks for reading, have a great week!

- Shawn

Originally published at