Do not do anything. Relax. And just try to understand what I am trying to say below. Really try to understand. Just try to understand.
You think you are depressed, suffering from anxiety and hence you keep getting negative thoughts: “I have low self esteem”, “I wont be able to understand it”, “I hate studying”, “I do not have inner piece” Right?
OK, let me say that again…
You first think you are ‘depressed’, ‘suffering from anxiety’…. and ‘…hence you keep getting negative thoughts’. So when those negative thoughts increase…like “I have low self esteem”, “I wont be able to understand it”, “I hate studying”, “I do not have inner peace” you ‘permit’ them to hang around. Because they are ‘justified’….you are depressed after all “So no wonder such thoughts will come..!!!”
This is not a ‘mistake’ you are committing. This is what’s happening. That’s how the process works.
Negative thoughts come, often without any rhyme or reason. Most often we ignore them like we would ignore street noise while speaking on the phone. But at one point, we decide to dwell on them. We pay attention to them. Give them our energy. They gain power. Then we also decide that this must be a permanent “condition”. If you are well read, then you might even give it a name like ‘depression’ and a cause like ‘low self esteem’.
We assume that we feel and then think. But here’s the surprise. It’s the other way round. We feel our thinking. Two people see the same person and get different feelings. Because their thoughts about that person, or that circumstance are different. Maybe the thoughts come unconsciously. But they do come..and then we feel.
We are not feeling other people or circumstances. We are feeling our thoughts about those people or circumstances.
Let the line above sink in. It’s not a theory. It’s the truth.
Now why are the thoughts different? Why do they become negative? Why positive? Who knows? Even if you do know (“…when you were 4 years old, your Mom said ….which left a trauma on you…due to which you started doing …in school…which was then reinforced and became part of your conditioning….”) what’s the use? You will find the SOURCE of your negative thoughts and might feel ‘justified’…but that will not make the thought go away. Plus there is no ONE way how the negative or positive thoughts come – which you will then “control”
They keep arising like a radio playing in the background. You cannot decide which songs will play. But you do decide which songs to pay attention to.
Sometimes the song is really irritating and nasty. Just cannot get it out of your head. But you do not diagnose yourself with a condition like “songression” and decide to listen to other songs etc. If you do that, the more you try, more the song will stick. We intuitively understand that. So we simply ignore the song, hard though it may be. We refuse to give them more energy. We know that’s the only way. We know that’s the natural way.
So we cannot control which thoughts will arise. But we control which thoughts we choose to DWELL on.
And then we will get the equivalent feelings. You dwell longer…feelings stay longer. Then you think the feelings are real. No they are simply the result of the thoughts you chose to dwell on.
Now you might think that this is all a load of BS. So tomorrow when you will again get some unwanted, useless, undesired, negative thoughts, you might choose to dwell on them. Cool!
You might think that ‘ignoring’ will work only for ‘trivial’ cases, and that your’s is a very serious case. That these thoughts cannot be ignored. So you will dwell on them. Cool!
Or you might choose to ignore them. Cool!
Or you might want to visit a psychiatrist and pop some pills and then choose to ignore them, because you think ‘now you can ignore them’
Or you might want to undergo some therapy…and then ‘think’ that that ‘they are losing power’ and hence you ‘can now ignore them’ and then choose to ignore them.
Whatever your diagnosis or ‘solution’ is, the cure will be when the thoughts some come…and you choose to ignore them.
See that you are not dealing with ‘depression’. You are simply always dealing with ‘thoughts’ that are depressing…RIGHT NOW. From moment to moment. And continuously making the choice… RIGHT NOW….to dwell on them…from moment to moment.
Next time they come, you always have the freedom to ask: “Do I want to dwell on them?”
You cannot control the initiation of the loop, but you can decide when to break it.
Note 1: This answer might be controversial, and I might get comments that ‘depression’ is a physical condition. It absolutely is. Like blushing causes blood to rush to your face. Mental conditions can manifest physically and vice versa. The point is no matter how old the physical condition, the thoughts are still being generated in the moment. You are free to ignore the negative thoughts or think that you cannot. I have no power to stop you. Whatever you choose to think, you will experience exactly that .
Note 2: Ignoring negative thoughts should not be confused with ‘denial’. Denial is when you refuse to accept that you are getting negative thoughts, and the subsequent negative feelings. To pretend that everything is hunky dory. You are actually giving energy by labelling them as ‘negative’, being afraid enough to have to ‘deny their existence’ and then concoct some positive thoughts in order to justify that denial or use some ‘technique’ etc etc etc. That’s a lot of invested energy! You then make the problem worse.
I am saying that the negative thoughts will pop up sometimes, and they will cause negative feelings too. Nothing to resist. But if you want to, you can choose to simply ignore them. That’s all.