We are constantly engaged in mental dialogue with ourselves.
Even on those brief moments when you catch your thoughts, they quickly move to the next ones, keeping us constantly busy with a bunch of thoughts that truly don’t even matter.
Escaping the confines of our own mind can be difficult, but it is certainly not impossible.
All those thoughts, ideas, feelings, and emotions don’t have to continue to interfere with what can be a peaceful mind that is grounded in awareness.
You can stop the incessant mental chatter and gain calm over the chaotic.
What is Mental Chatter?
Mental chatter is what we’re constantly engaged in with our own thoughts. One thought appears, slips away, immediately replaced by another thought, and so on.
The Buddhists refer to this as “monkey mind” one with thoughts that are always swinging from branch to branch without any rest in the present moment.
The past is a big player in our personal mental chatter.
We obsess over things that happened in the past, thinking about how we could have made them different, why they had to turn out the way they did and often beat ourselves up for mistakes we think we made.
Thinking about the future is no different and is at as much fault as our thoughts of the past for keeping us constantly conversing with ourselves.
We worry about the future, wonder how things are going to turn out, turn our mind to a fantasy land and then wonder why we’re so discontented with what we have.
Mental chatter is what keeps us from living in the now and experiencing life from the beauty and magic of this one present moment.
How to Stop Your Mental Chatter
Stopping your mental chatter is all about learning how to take control of the thoughts in your mind.
You are the only one that has control of your thoughts, so it is up to you to control them. The next time your mind just won’t seem to stop, try some of the following and help turn your thoughts back to the present moment.
Focus on Your Breath
Mind racing? Try taking ten deep breaths the next time you can’t seem to get control of your thoughts.
It will help bring you back to the present moment and clear whatever thoughts are invading your space.
Begin to do this throughout the day every day, and you will see just how far a little focus on your breath will go.
Think of it like a mini-meditation throughout the day, and you’ll find power in a calmer mind that is filled with way less than it used to be.
Develop a Daily Meditation Practice
You don’t have to get all crazy, monk style to enjoy the benefits of meditation. All you have to do is sit with your breath (and thoughts) for at least five minutes each day.
If you’re new to meditation, you’ll find those thoughts you’re trying to escape definitely seem to be taking their sweet time, but with time you’ll find they start to fade.
Meditation literally changes the chemistry of our brain and allows for a more centered state of existence. There’s a reason why meditation has become so popular. It works.
Learn to Detach from Circumstances out of Your Control
This one’s tough, but is huge when you want to stop the mental chatter that keeps you prisoner to past and future.
Do not let what people do or say disturb the thoughts you can ultimately control. So what if someone said something about you that wasn’t true?
That’s all about them, not you. Let go of the emotions attached to things that happen and accept them for what they are.
Acceptance is key in living with a peaceful mind. Be where you are with what you have right now and love every single moment of it, because ultimately now is all you have.