Here is how the ego traps you: First you believe the negative self talk; I'll never get this finished in time to meet the deadline. I shouldn't have taken on this project. Ask for help. Can't do that now. I don't want anyone to know I'm having problems.
Then you identify with it; I'm so stupid. I'm not good enough. Then you react to it; I'm so uptight. Gotta take a break. I'll get a coffee then come back to it. It is your emotional reaction to self-limiting, self-destructive thoughts that adds stress to your central nervous systems and makes you sick.
You are not your thoughts: As real and earth shattering as those thoughts seem to be, they are not true about you. You can move beyond them. But first it helps to understand the ego.
What is ego? Your ego is just a bundle of thoughts about ME, ME, ME. Grandiose self talk, false beliefs, ideas, and judgments are simply impressions of your life's experiences that you picked up as you were growing up.
When you came into this world, your mind was a clean slate - no thoughts of the past or the future. It was pure potential. An infant lives completely in the present moment.
That is why a baby is so full of wonder and innocence; everything is new and exciting to a baby. Their mind soaks up everything like a sponge. Consider how quickly a baby learns how to master a complicated language, so easily and effortlessly.
Ego development: In order to relate to the world around it, the baby's mind developed ego. A baby needs to learn how to get what it wants from its world. It cries when it's hungry and wants to be fed. If mom is busy with other siblings and cannot attend to the baby immediately, then the baby adopts behaviour that will get attention, to get its needs met. It is through trial and error that a child learns how to be in the world. If one behaviour doesn't work, then it tries another.
So, here you are today, being driven through life by thoughts surfacing from your subconscious mind.
Not all thoughts are negative self talk of your ego, but most of them are: We have become so far removed from the Source of pure love and wisdom, we have forgotten that is who we are, actually what we are. We are pure consciousness awareness, pure love. Negative self-limiting thoughts are not the truth of who you are. They are just impressions of your experiences in life with significant others. Your sense of self-worth is based on your interpretation of how other related to you.
If Aunt Tillie ignored you and spent more time with your brother, you may have developed an idea that you were not important, or not good enough. When your big brother poked at you to make you cry you developed the idea that you were a bother to him. When mommy cuddled and smiled at you, you felt loved and secure.
Can you see? The world according to you as a child was based on your interpretation of how others related to you. How others relate to you is about them – not about you.
In fact, even most adults do not understand that. That is why most relationships fail to blossom into a beautiful union of two people freely expressing true unconditional love and compassion.
The busy and confused mind:The average person thinks about 100,000 thoughts a day. And what do you think those thoughts are about? Unfortunately, they are not all about what a wonderful world this is.
Some thoughts are pure crap: Most of your precious time is taken up with the false ego’s negative self talk; thoughts that obsessively captured you in the past or the future.
Now that you understand how useless and self-destructive those thoughts are you are in a better position to stop those thought patterns.
And now that you know that your thoughts are lies about you, you can stop believing them.
Don’t fight the ego, embrace it: resistance to negative self talk is futile. If you try to suppress negative thoughts and feelings with drugs or alcohol, your relief is only temporary, not to mention harmful to your body and your mind.
If you try to suppress them by ignoring them, you are actually giving them more attention, and what you give your attention to grows.
Acceptance and awareness in the present moment is a key to dissolving ego.
What causes depression? The prolonged mind storms of negative thoughts. Beating depression naturally is possible with cognitive restructuring and the healing power of meditation.
What Causes Stress ? ALL of the above!
Others are: job loss, end of romantic relationship, loss of a loved one, reading the newspaper, and the list goes on.
Three steps to depression recovery:
Depression is the result of prolonged identification with self-disparaging and self-limiting thoughts; false beliefs and judgments. Once you grasp that concept, and stop believing the lies of your ego, depression recovery is well underway.
Unfortunately most negative thinking occurs at the subconscious level of your mind.
In other words, you are not consciously aware that your mind is on a downward spiraling thought stream leading into a pity party.
Watching your thoughts flowing through your mind, empowers you to change your thinking (cognitive restructuring) before they sink into unconsciousness.
I recommend this type of meditation because I know it works - particularly when it comes to altering moods that are caused by distorted thinking.