Albert Einstein once said; “The world as we have created it is a process of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking.” As I sat in bed, on my MacBook typing away at a passion project, I never imagined I’d hit save, close out the Microsoft Word program, (which I took time researching how to download and operate on an Apple) , and lose all my progress from the last week. I have a USB for this exact reason and yet now it was gone. I could neither laugh nor cry; I was like that Carrie Bradshaw meme where she’s just blinking blankly. You know the one, you’ve seen before.
A writer has many projects; I’m no exception. Some of the short stories which I write I never intend on posting, they’re for me. They confront uncomfortable truths about my emotions and complex struggles within my mind. Tuesday night, as I lay in bed, I cried for no other reason other than that I felt sad. Nothing happened, nothing triggered me. I’m far from unhappy with the circumstances in my life; in fact, I’m arguably the happiest I have ever been. Now as I stared blankly at my laptop, all my progress still possibly gone, I couldn’t bring myself to feel a damn thing. I wanted to feel something, instead, I felt voided.
The human mind is a very complex thing that I don’t think it’s given enough credit for. The book, that I reference a lot here, Embraced by the Light by Betty J. Eadie says that if only we knew the power of our thoughts we would guard them closely. I am neither optimistic nor pessimistic; I am a realist. I look at both sides of any situation. Is the glass half empty? Is it half full? Maybe it’s neither. Maybe a glass filled with something (do they ever specify what’s in the glass?) is just that. A glass that is filled with some substance to provide nourishment to us. One thing I’m certain about is this: we cannot give from an empty cup.
We certainly cannot fill an empty cup when we think about what we don’t have. Sometimes, we fill others’ cups and sometimes they fill ours. I don’t have more than half of the progress on the writing project I’ve been working on for the last several months, but I do have a husband who is hell-bent on purchasing a recovery program to at least try. In my situation, whether the proverbial glass is full or empty is irrelevant. I am surrounded by such an amazing support system I have with family and friends that even when the glass seems like it could be getting empty, it isn’t.
I do believe that when we transform our thoughts; we can transform our lives and whether the cup is half filled or empty doesn’t matter because we’re just grateful to have a cup. I am not sure if I will be able to recover the most recently updated document I lost but I’m always looking to improve myself and am forever grateful for the relationships, friendships, and deeply meaningful connections I have. As time slips on, these people and things we love will one day be lost too. It’s inevitable. If you’re born, you will one day die but memories and feelings about these things live on. In this way, we’re all immortal to some extent. This is why we must constantly take stock of how we treat those around us both in our words and minds.
We are never guaranteed tomorrow, friends. We would like to think that life goes on indefinitely and to some extent it does, with and without us. When we transform our thoughts to focus on the wonderful things we have in our lives it’s impossible to truly stay down and out about anything. When we focus on what we DO have rather than what we lost we can fill our cups. When we fill our cups, we can be the best versions of ourselves and create a reality we can be proud of.
So as I sat there, loose-fitted T-shirt, lounge shorts, and a messy bun staring blankly at my computer; as Tom swooped in swearing to save the day, I couldn’t help but feel grateful. Transforming your mind doesn’t mean disappointing things won’t happen from time to time, but it does allow you to feel the emotion and move on from it. Once you allow yourself to feel and embrace those sad feelings, you can let them go and focus on the good. The good, in this case, is a saved version from last week on my old computer. Yes, my updates may be gone, but the whole document itself is not.
Whether I had seen the cup as half empty or depleted at that moment, it didn’t matter, I felt lifted entirely by his efforts to bring back what I put my heart and soul into and that was enough substance in that proverbial cup to keep me sustained.
I know it one point when I was a child, it was very easy to be optimistic. As I became a moody, sullen, teenager pessimism reigned supreme as life experiences do tend to dim even the brightest lights. As an adult I’ve learned; to take each exhilarating and demoralizing experience life throws at me as a blessing and lesson. Nobody is without doubts, insecurities, and profound sadness at times. The cold truth is, that everyone’s faking it. Nobody’s got their shit together.
I feel like Einstein was onto something when he said our train of thought affects our reality. Like attracts like, if you are an extremely negative person you won’t see the lesson in the challenges that you face. You’ll simply see inconveniences and disappointments. We can’t grow spiritually from negativity. The good news is we can break these proverbial chains at any time. If you transform negative thoughts into positive thoughts you allow positive energy to flow to you rather than away from you. This is sometimes easier said than done and requires constant mental training in your brain.
For me; the miracle jar I have works wonders! I simply transform a worry, fear, or concern into a positive statement: ‘I lost all of my progress on the fan novel I was working on’ becomes ‘I have a saved copy from last week of my fan novel; I will find the motivation to rewrite the parts I lost and it will be even better than the progress I lost’. I put the positive statement into the jar and believe that the highest and best possible outcome will occur. Do you see how much better the second statement sounds though? With determination, the rewards of transforming our thoughts to transform our reality are beneficial. Instead, we see that things that seem so awful are an opportunity for spiritual and emotional growth and we can say “Thank you for this spiritual lesson”. The key is to take life one day at a time. If you falter or fail you can always brush yourself off and keep trying to be more positive with your thoughts. If we focus on the good surrounding us, and there is some good in everyone’s life, we can conquer anything life throws our way.