My Fellow Distractoids,
What do you notice about the content of the thoughts in your head? Are they nice, serene, calming, compassionate, balanced, good-natured, kind, forgiving, wise, and full of gratitude? Didn’t think so!
Distractoids don’t see the thoughts in their heads for what they are — repetitive, judgmental, ego-driven noise that lead to anxiety and icky emotions. Masters of Distraction have learned to see their thoughts in proper perspective — mental stuff that has no real “meaning.”
What do you notice about the thoughts in your head? One thing many people find is that they are incessant and repetitive and mostly seem to serve no purpose. But there’s something deeper and darker going on…
Notice how frequently the thoughts in your head are negative judgments and self-judgments. Notice how the voice always wants to make itself right and others wrong. Does the voice in your head win every argument and vanquish every enemy? Mine does.
Why? Because the voice in my head is my ego talking. Unchecked, the ego is very, well, egotistical. It wants to be adored. It wants to win and everyone else to lose. It makes itself right and others wrong. It’s desperate for power and terribly afraid of being diminished or extinguished. The ego wants us to identify with it, which it does by hooking into our emotions, desires, and fears. The ego would like us to act impulsively and emotionally. The ego loves drama.The ego wants to stay in control by keeping us unconscious.
Mindfulness is our way of self-regulating our attachment to and identification with the ego voice. It’s our way of disrupting the connection to the voice in our head. It’s also our way of observing and learning about our judgments of other people and negative judgments about ourselves …
What are your negative self-judgments? What stories do you tell yourself about you? Are these judgments and stories true and accurate or are they false? Do you ever observe the ego voice saying positive things about yourself or others?
What does this have to do with ADHD? Many of us have internalized judgments heard from others that we have turned into harsh judgments of ourselves. A lot of times these unexamined judgments keep us feeling depressed and anxious even though they are not true.
A lot of us have deep shame, which is a particular kind of negative judgment — the belief that there is something wrong with me. Not something I did, but rather who and what I am. If there is something fundamentally wrong with me, that does not leave much hope for positive change. Conversely, a lot of times we totally lose sight of all the good things about us. And we don’t give ourselves credit for the things we achieve.
Observing and recognizing what the voice is saying is the first step in letting go of negative self judgments and shame. It’s like taking a huge weight off your back. Take the weight off, and forward movement becomes a whole lot easier.