Why The Path Of Self Mastery Lies In Your Ability To Control Your Mind
“To enjoy good health, to bring true happiness to one’s family, to bring peace to all, one must first discipline and control one’s own mind. If a man can control his mind he can find the way to Enlightenment, and all wisdom and virtue will naturally come to him.” (Buddha)
What if I were to tell you that everything you experience comes from the mind? Well, this is true. Now, think of this: If everything you experience comes from the mind then wouldn’t it make sense to walk the path of mastery in terms of mastering yourself and your own mind?
The mind is where all of the magic takes place in your life as well as all the misery. You can either make your life a living hell through the thoughts, ideas, and beliefs that your mind comes up with or you can make your life into a living heaven through the very same mechanism.
What are the aspects of the mind?
Here is what your mind consists of in terms of how it manifests results within your life:
Thoughts are fleeting and we all have them. Thinking alone can make a heaven of hell and hell of heaven so this is why thoughts are a major aspect in terms of personal mastery over the mind and self.
There are two types of thought: Empowering Thought & Disempowering Thought.
Empowering thoughts revolve around personal improvement and a promotion oriented view of the world — a growth mindset.
Disempowering thoughts revolve around scarcity, negativity, and essentially a fixed mindset.
Your habitual pattern of thought will dictate how you feel and then how you act. So, it would be wise to transition your mindset from a fixed mindset to a growth mindset.
Beliefs are particularly powerful because they dictate how you act within the world. They either limit or expand your worldview depending on the type of belief that you hold. Your belief can either become a dogma — a rigid way of viewing the world or your beliefs can become a quality of open mindedness — a way of looking at the world that takes in everything and yet holds onto nothing rigidly.
Beliefs also have a quality to them where they become paradigms. Paradigms are simply a web of beliefs that have become strengthened so much that they become interlocked with the individual that holds them. Paradigms are particularly powerful in determining the results that one gets in life because they determine the habitual actions and potential actions that one will take.
Think about it, if I believe that I can’t become financially independent then do you think that I will take the actions necessary to eventually get to that vision or goal for myself? The answer is, of course not.
Now, think about the opposite belief where I absolutely believe that I will become financially independent one day. My actions are going to be completely different from the other belief system.
This is the power of belief.
Emotions are a fascinating topic that must be studied and experimented with for years in order to master.
Firstly, emotions are neither “good” or “bad.” They are simply emotional responses to external or internal circumstances. Many problems arise when we judge our emotions and moralize them.
Emotions determine how we feel and therefore determine our actions. Knowing this, if we can gain control over how we feel then we can gain control over our actions. How do we control how we feel, you ask? The key is to either change the thought that you have or change the action that you engage in.
If I change my thought then I change my internal environment which shifts my external environment as a result.
If I change my action then I change my external environment which then shifts my internal environment.
Picture this: You’re stuck in traffic and have a choice between a positive and negative thought. Imagine that you had chosen the positive thought. Your whole experience of life in that moment would be completely different than if you had chosen the negative thought.
Picture this now: Imagine that you’re feeling a bit lethargic and down on yourself. How would a cold shower sound? Probably terrible if you’ve never done it but I can tell you that it does wonders for changing your mood. It energizes you and shifts your emotional frequency which makes all the difference.
Those are the three basics pillars of what controls your mind and controls your life, in turn. In the next section, I will go over how we can utilize strategies to master these three pillars of the mind.
How We Can We Master Our Own Minds
I will go through the three pillars of the mind one by one and provide solutions to how we can gain mastery over each of them.
Mindfulness Meditation — Mindfulness meditation actually helps with all three pillars — beliefs, thoughts, and emotions in a powerful way. It has the ability to release repressed emotions, stop patterns of thought altogether, and untangle the rigid web of beliefs that hold us back from our potential.
Observation Of Thoughts — This goes hand in hand with mindfulness meditation but it can also be used on its own without any specific meditative practice. Simply observe the thoughts that bubble up from your subconscious and bring them into your present awareness (to consciousness).
Reframing — To reframe your thoughts is to shift how you view the world. Here is an example of what a reframe would look like:
“I am so lazy.” → “I just need a powerful enough vision and reason for why I want to do this task.”
“I can never be successful.” → “I can achieve success as long as I work hard and discipline myself to do the things I must do in order to grow.”
Writing Down Beliefs & Questioning Them — Writing down your beliefs brings your beliefs from unconscious thought to conscious thought and that is what gives you the power to change your beliefs. Combining this with questioning your beliefs as to whether they are actually true or not, you give yourself the chance to reframe your beliefs to a more resourceful type.
Real Life Experimentation — Trying new things in your life will open up new perspectives and therefore give you more opportunities to change your beliefs to those that are more aligned with reality.
Study Emotional Intelligence (EQ) — In order to master your emotions, you must study EQ in general. EQ will allow you to gain a grip of mastery over your emotions.
Feel Your Emotions Fully — Truly feeling into your emotions is very therapeutic. Many people resist emotions and this is what causes the emotion to persist. If you truly feel sad then the sadness will dissipate over time. If you truly feel anxious then the anxiety will dissipate over time. Emotions are like clouds passing by up above so treat them appropriately.
Talk About Your Emotions — This goes together with feeling your emotions fully. Find someone who is willing to truly listen and talk about your emotions.
If you can take control of these three pillars of the mind then you will experience life in a much more positive way and be an example to others of what is possible.
Control your mind and you control your life.