Changing our Thoughts

On New Year’s Day many of us gathered in our town’s Center City Park for our own MedMob…a large group of well intentioned folks who wanted to spread their loving kindness through guided meditation. Since that day, the paper has run a few editorials. The positive ones outweigh the questioning ones, but they all make me pause and consider: What is it that we can accomplish through our good thoughts?

I consider this as I look inward and assess my acumen for being an accomplished self-critic. I’m in my final term of graduate school and I can tell myself that I am the worst writer in the class, that all my work should be burned, and that me and everyone else would be better served if I packed up my writing toys and got lost. Those are the thoughts that can dance a pretty mean tango in my head if I let them. But I don’t have to let them. I can and I do change my thoughts.

When I meditate, I can focus on my breathing. I can slow down the swirling thoughts and consider for those few moments or those several minutes that I am exactly where I am supposed to be in life. I am here with my uncertainties, my self doubt, and… with my possibilities. I offer myself a few words that begin to change my thoughts from worry and criticism to compassion and care. In a few quiet moments that all of us can afford to take, we can begin to change our thoughts. When we change our thoughts, we change our actions. When we change our actions, both our internal world and our external environment benefit.

While our MedMob might not be able to point to some hard physical fact of betterment, each of us can point inwardly and know without any scientific measurement that we are making a difference. That difference happens inside when we re-wire our thought patterns. We all have the capacity to change our criticisms to compassion and, it starts with one good thought.

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