By David Joel Miller
Do you have a Blue Jay Mind? Is your mind on overload?
Does your mind feel like it is full? Is your brain always rushing somewhere? Do you sometimes feel like your mind is having a traffic jam?
Have you ever sat outside, a park or the lake, when a flock of Blue Jays or other loud birds had a constant chattering conversation? Does your own mind sound like that sometimes? In meditation, they refer to this as a monkey mind. But we North Americans we don’t see monkeys except in the zoo.
Flocks of loud obnoxious birds; that we see a lot of.
Some days my mind sounds like that squabbling in the tree outside my window.
You know you are not fully crazy; these are not voices in your head. These things that overwhelm you are your own thoughts, but that does not make it any easier to keep that mind of yours under control.
An unquiet mind is an unruly companion.
Some days my brain is just plain full. Is yours? I tell people around me not to tell me one more thing that I need to remember. I say, only half-joking, that if I learn one more thing I will need to forget something I used to know and I am afraid that trying to remember what they are telling me may mean I will forget how to get home tonight.
Do you reach the point of cognitive overload and find that you are working harder and harder to remember less and less? You may be getting old; you may be losing some abilities. If so see your doctor.
There is a simpler explanation.
We only have so many cognitive resources at our command. My computer has just so much storage space and so does my mind.
What we all need to do is reserve some space in our heads for the things that really matter. Learn to simplify our minds and reduce our worries. Less stuff rattling around in our brains results in more calmness, more serenity.
The difficult part of this is to get your mind slowed down and cleared out when you need to. We all can become so accustomed to thinking, thinking, always thinking that for many people it is difficult to shut that mind off when the times come to give your mind a rest.
Some people find mindfulness and meditation training to be helpful to get that mind quiet. Other people need counseling or even medication.
If your mind is constantly racing, if you head is full of noise and most of it is your own thoughts seek help. Just listening to your own thoughts day after day can wear you out.
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For more about David Joel Miller and my work in the areas of mental health, substance abuse and Co-occurring disorders see the about the author page. For information about my other writing work beyond this blog check out my Google+ page or the Facebook author’s page, up under David Joel Miller. Posts to the “books, trainings, and classes” category will tell you about those activities. If you are in the Fresno California area, information about my private practice is at counselorfresno.com. A list of books I have read and can recommend is over at Recommended Books