Turn Off The Thought Bubble Machine
Do you remember when you were a kid, how much fun it was to chase bubbles and pop them? I would run after the bubbles, laughing and giggling as I tried to catch them in my hands or pop them with my finger. I have watched my children do the same thing. In recent years, it’s been fun to watch my grandchildren laugh as they chased the bubbles that were coming from an automatic bubble blower. So many bubbles that it was impossible to catch them all.
Our troublesome thoughts are like the bubbles made by an automatic bubble machine. Thousands of thought bubbles pop into our head each day. Some of the thoughts drift by unnoticed. Others are pleasant thoughts that can actually make us smile and feel good about ourselves. Those thoughts are a match for our natural state, which is happiness.
Still other thought bubbles are irritating or upsetting to us. Those are the thoughts that tell us we are not good enough and lead us to feel insecure. They are the thoughts that bring old hurts back to the surface of our minds. When those kinds of thoughts come up, they can take us down into a low mood and make us feel bad very quickly.
If you find yourself in a low mood, you may have a tendency to try to figure out what is causing your low mood. That would be like trying to catch and pop all the bubbles coming out of the automatic bubble blower. Meanwhile, the automatic thought bubble machine continues to pump out more negative thoughts. Those new thoughts support the thoughts you are already grappling with. Your insecure feelings will grow and your mood will drop even lower.
Wouldn’t it be easier to simply turn off the thought bubble machine?
How do we turn off the thought machine? We turn it off by focusing our attention on doing something that has nothing to do with the negative thoughts. We can go for a walk or a drive. Play with a puppy or work on a hobby. Clean out a closet or go to the gym. Do anything that relaxes you and takes you out of your head.
When we turn off the thought machine, the negative thoughts fade away and our natural state of happiness comes to the surface.