“A thought sharing (basis close observation of own mind’s behavior): How mind wanders and craves for recognition & appreciation.”
Dear Mind, though you are the nearest and dearest to me, however, sometimes you seem like a stranger.We are in a game with each other where at times you win, and sometimes I win. You are always a mystery to me. But, you know, sometimes I act smarter and without saying and judging anything, I just observe you, very closely, very minutely. This leads me to come closer to you.
10th January 2017
It’s 2.30 AM. I am in the middle of my copious thoughts. What will happen tomorrow?
I am always curious to learn new things and do new experiments with life. I wonder as the number of my age is increasing, my mental limitation and fears are decreasing.
Though I have never been a sports person but in the urge to learn something new, I started playing TT in office. Believe me, it is fascinating. Small rackets, a small cute little TT ball, a 9*5 sq.ft. Table and full throttle shots became a matter of interest for me. Though the whole set up of TT was not new in office, it was there since long. But most of the time we are so engrossed in our day today clutters & chaotic life that we miss the beauty and importance of our surroundings. But if we are actually curious to know something and intended to perform what we are determined for, automatically we get time and atmosphere and circumstances started working in our favor.
For last few days, this game was overpowering my head. I found it very interesting and I spared time to learn. I had been playing TT in my office with the clear-cut objective to feel the joy of the game and to explore the unexplored.
This is eternal when you just play, live in the moment, immersed here and now, and enjoy every moment of the journey without waiting and bothering for the destination. I played for hours, made new friends, learnt from everybody (even from our pantry boy, who taught me drop shot and topspin), thoroughly enjoyed it, lost multiple matches though, laughed loud at my stupid shots, felt physically tired at the end of the day, slept in peace, waiting next day to rise.
Now, here my dear mind you played your game very well…..
Yesterday, My HR came to me and asked: “How long have you been playing?”
“This new year- 10 days” I replied
“Say No…….You are kidding me Prachi” She exclaimed.
“Arreee….Why do I need to?” I said.
Tournaments are going on. Why don’t you participate in the tournament? You are playing so well.”
The immediate impact of this conversation changed my outlook towards the game and my objective. A little sparkle of ego sprinkled over my mind in a fraction of a moment.
“Oh, is it so? Do you think I play well”?
She said “Oh yes and I am nominating your name.”
This happens with most of us, we are so easily affected by the external factors to identify ourselves with various objects (Here my greed of appreciation from everybody suddenly stirred). I was trapped in this mind game. A few moments back I was in a mode of learning and suddenly I started treating myself like a pro. A few moments back I was playing for myself, now I am thinking to prove myself to people.
I decided to participate in the tournament. And the moment, word “competition” came into existence, the whole focus of mine shifted from “joy of playing” to “prove myself” better than the opponent. The anxiety immediately replaced the original sense of ecstasy. Strange wrinkles on forehead appeared due to a desperate desire of winning.
I came to the Table, found friends to play with me. Mind was turbulent and its whole connotation of play was changed and it converted my word from “Let’s play” with “Let’s practice”. Overall natural joy has vanished. I tempted to jump ahead of all, win and make people (even after my exit from this place) talk about me. What a wonderful manipulation of mind !!!
Tomorrow I have a match, and in arms of midnight, when my soul must be contented and synchronized with my mind, thoughts are haphazardly wandering. My mind is completely gripped in upcoming match‘s visualization. I am scared of losing the match and praying to win. I am not able to sleep at all. My heart is heavy, my breaths are heavier. Instead of thinking to play well, I am totally attached to the result.
Standing on the terrace, staring the moon, deep inside I am observing a strange & sudden swing from one state of mind to another. I am watching my mind. There is no interval. Just shifting from one state to another and to another and so on. The journey of mind from ecstasy to ego is interesting to observe. A feeling of competitiveness just to prove myself better than others, brutally looted my basic blissful instinct. Ego took over, the demon won. What has happened to me? Though I have found the reason still it is not easy to clear the mind’s clutter. This is the root of suffering, the Ego, and crave for recognition & identification. This deviates the focus. This deviates us from the true essence of life and distant us from the inward journey.
It’s not at all bad to have sportsmanship quality & inclination towards betterment, however, it requires deep understanding and control over mind to be contented throughout the competition. Undoubtedly, competition makes us a better performer but it must be taken as a natural spirit of the game. The focus should be on the game rather than the result. Clinging to the thought of results every moment squeezes complete mental energy and peace.
In life game also, we focus our energy much on future tensions (Yes, if we observe our thoughts we find that most of the time our mind is occupied in negative or tensed thoughts about future) and forget to live the little sweet moments and people around us.
Just traveled back to 12th May 2017.
By the way, that day I won semi-final but lost the final match. Regular TT is still on and yes, I consider myself in learning mode. I played many matches in this time period and I never felt the same anxiety I had that day.
- It’s good to travel in past to reminisce the wisdom pearls from your life. Each experience is precious as far as it is teaching you some lifelong lessons. From your past to present, try not to transmit the repentance but intelligence.
- Don’t even try to control your mind and thoughts. It’s not possible.Take a step back, stand at a distance, and now watch the mind as just another object. Watch the thoughts as if you are standing on the sea shore and watching the waves in the vast sea. This observation can keep away much of the sufferings. I say this “मन की गति पर नियंत्रण नहीं, नज़र रखे.”
- Look around. Many small beautiful moments are there to live “Here and now.” Don’t mark your present in the present when there is mental absenteeism. It’s Proxy.
- Learn from the past, plan for future but live in present. This very moment is building the next and so on.
- The quality of “Karma” defines the quality of life. Be honest what you do and do it with your full potential immersing completely in the present moment without fragmented mind. A fragmented mind continuously jumps in past, present, and future. It’s not stable.
The incident, quotations, conversation and expression of thoughts are based on author’s real life experience.
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