When distracting mental chatter overpowers our attention, we lose our ability to perform effective and impactful actions.
This is the same chatter of thoughts that makes us think about work when we are on a vacation, or about the weekend when we are at work. We all have experienced this chatter when we lie in bed, thinking about things we were going to do the next day, next week, or sometimes even next year.
What if I told you that there was a trick that could liberate us, from this distracting mental chatter? What if I also told you that through this book we will embark on a journey to experientially understand how to handle these distracting thoughts and potentially evolve the way we think. Will you be interested?
“Bring it on!” did I hear you say?
So let’s get started right away!
In order to understand how distracting thoughts overpower our attention, we will need to first understand what thoughts and attention really are? Not as a concept but really.. And you may be surprised, just the way I was, by what you discover.
Only once we experientially understand what thoughts and attention are, can we move on to the next step: exploring the interplay between the two. This interplay between attention and thoughts determines the ‘way we think’ or simply, our ‘thinking.’
It is important to note that though they are interrelated, ‘thinking’ is different from ‘thoughts’. This distinction between thinking and thoughts holds the key to understanding the simple trick to evolve the way we think and liberate us from mental chatter.
So what is this trick?
Well, let us start thousands of years ago. Much before the modern age of severely restless and fragmented attention that feeds off fifteen-second news cycles, WhatsApp, Facebook, and Twitter alerts.
Even the folks living in the ancient ages, surrounded by the unpredictability of life, disease, death, and weather, felt that their mental chatter made them restless resulting in troublesome and inefficient thinking. Through their cloud of anxiety, despair, and insecurity, they sensed that they were missing out on something. They discovered the existence of what we refer to in this book as a ‘box’, which gave us a partial and distorted view of reality. This box represents uncontrolled thoughts that cloud our minds.
Then a few wise ones figured out the trick to take this box out. The trick to take out the box, or to Unbox, forms the central theme of MindGym Workshops. This trick helps us learn a new way of thinking - Mindful Thinking.
Back in those ancient times, people did not have easy access to this trick. Most people had to give up their regular life and live in communities devoted exclusively to finding ways to unbox. Today, this information is widely available. Guidance, for which you would have to travel half way around the world and devote decades of your life to get access to, is now one-click away on your Amazon account.
With all the perks of instant gratification that modern age has unleashed, instant unboxing remains as elusive as it did thousands of years ago. There is no shortcut for the effort that is required to really understand the trick to get out of that box.
It should not be surprising that the quality of our attention has changed dramatically over the last few decades. So intuitively, one would think that some of the techniques that were formulated thousands of years ago may need to be adapted for the modern world.
But I was surprised to find out that the trick to get out of the box remained more or less the same across the ages. I was even more surprised to find out how simple this trick was and often wondered why this wisdom was not ubiquitous?
Then I finally realized what the reason was. What really needed to evolve was not the trick itself, but the narrative around the trick, which makes it less confusing and more relatable in the modern world.
That, in a nutshell, is what MindGym Initiative attempts to do.
Excerpted from the book "Unbox! Power of Mindful Thinking", with permission from publisher. The book is available on Amazon with a 5/5 rating.