How to Lose That Weight?
How to Lose That Weight?
How much do your thoughts weigh?
Almost every other person I meet is on a “journey”. Funnily, it is not a physical journey or a spiritual journey – Rather it is a weight loss journey. I have been ‘on and off’ this journey myself. And trust me, this is perhaps one of the rarest of journeys wherein others’ progress can cause major heartburn for you. Nevertheless, we keep moving.
I still have no clue, how losing weight became a common topic in every household – regardless of caste, religion, income, and political views. All I know is, everyone wants it. A selected few are on a reverse journey of sorts (if there is any such term) of weight gain. According to the participants of this journey, the breed that aims to gain weight is rare and blessed. Though, thankfully no deity, in particular, has been assigned as the divine force behind it. But being what we are, work is not well accomplished unless it is what is called in Hindi “Ek teer aur do nishaane” – which means getting more than one work done at a time.
So I see many people visit temples – especially those with huge courtyards (Sri Balaji Temple in Kochi, Kerala is a perfect example). People walk from their homes to this temple and take 10 to 20 if not more, parikrama – which is close to 30-45 mins of brisk walking. Not only do they receive divine grace, but they also donate that extra lump of fat to the Lord. These devotees/ weight loss aspirants even keep track of how many parikramas others do and how much weight they have lost. Without any major data analysis in place, the amount and scope of deciphering each other’s weight loss journey by them is commendable.
Weight loss… weight gain… with parikramas or no parikramas – The one weight that most of us do not seem to lose is that of our thoughts. That constant chatter from the moment you are awake till you hit your bed at night. The ever-replaying of events – often unpleasant ones.
I personally have faced this situation. The mind keeps talking. The mind keeps looking for a starting point. Something as simple as a cup of coffee in the morning can sail you into thoughts that are decades old but the hurt is as fresh as the morning itself. There have been days when my body has felt so heavy to move out of bed because it has been loaded with infectious thoughts.
I would carry on with my routine, and the chatter will also carry on in my head. With time, as I hardly did anything specific to get rid of these thoughts, the garbage just grew.
It was only when this clutter of thoughts got manifested in the form of knots in my body – did I actually pay serious attention to it. My back, neck, shoulder, and arms – all hurt. The pain was constant, just the degree varied. After a couple of blood tests and x-rays, my doctor put me into intense physiotherapy sessions. I was even asked to look into options like meditation and deep breathing exercises. Not to forget be more physically active (which frankly, I was – which is why the doctor was alarmed).
According to the doctor, our thoughts and emotions when not resolved over a period of time can manifest themselves in the body leading to physical pain. It seems, my condition is the classic example of what goes inside us is manifested outside as well.
For the first time in my life, I was trying to find a solution for “How to Get Rid of Stressful Thoughts” and not trying to figure out “How to Get Rid of Body Weight”
This change was also because I understood that I needed something more than just physiotherapy sessions. I was aware of the constant clutter I have been accumulating. And like my wardrobe, which needed regular cleaning, replacement of clothes, and discarding of what I no longer wear/ or did not fit me – The same logic applied to our thoughts as well.
Being mindful is what I needed to be. Controlling the traffic of my thoughts was the need of the hour. Most of all – healing, letting go, and above all accepting the past and the present were things I needed to work on.
It is at this juncture that the words of Tai Sheridan gave me the direction I needed. The lines are:
“Thoughts can be a jail.
Watching them coming and going
lets you out to play in the universe.”
Thoughts sure can be a jail. We are trapped in it for years, and by the time we leave it – we are exhausted, tired, and maybe a little wiser. As Tai Sheridan says when we just watch the thoughts come and go, it is easier for us to enjoy the universe and play around.
Cut to 4 years down the line, today I have gotten rid of almost all the nasty painful knots. I no longer just focus on my body weight alone. Rather, I am constantly inclined towards “keeping a watch” on my thoughts. Constantly getting rid of the trash, learning, and re-learning to let go of harmful ones. Meditation and Mindfulness have helped me reach this place where I am comfortable talking about the weight of my thoughts and not just that of my body.
People around me have noticed this difference. I have managed to guide a few on this path of maintaining the health of our mental space, our thoughts – in short, our inner machinery.
Having said this, my journey towards a healthy thought weight is going to be an ongoing project till my last breath – Because there is so much to learn, unlearn, and make space for.