I’ve given up on idea of being able to think my way to success – it’s about as effective as trying to cure a headache by repeatedly hitting myself in the head with a hammer. I don’t believe success has anything to do with trying to think a certain way – it’s really about escaping the tyranny of the running commentary in my brain.
The Quality of Successful Living
The one quality that stands out from periods in my life when I’ve felt successful is the experience of flow – this is when I’m in the zone and fully concentrated on what I’m doing. This frame of mind means I’m bursting with energy, and I’m able to get more done. I’m also better able to take advantage of any opportunities on the horizon. When I’m experiencing flow in my life, I’m easier to be around, and I spend more time thinking about the needs of other people.
Success happens when I escape the bullshit in my head and instead take action to improve my life. It’s really simple – the less I think about things, the more I’m able to get done. This is because these thoughts that provide the soundtrack for much of my life are nonsense at best and toxic at worst. The more time I devote to listening to this stream of crap, the worse my life becomes.
The Solution to Problems Come When We Stop Thinking
I’ve found that the worst thing I can do when I’m faced with a big problem is to try to think my way out of it. I’m far more likely to come up with a solution if I try to clear my head by going for a long walk on the beach.
The answer to my problems is not to be found in the mental chatter that goes on in my brain. By trying to think my way out of my difficulties, I’m just encouraging this useless noise. The answers to most problems is to be found within this mental cacophony, but the only way to find it is to turn down the noise – more thinking has the opposite effect.
How to Escape the Tyranny of Your Thoughts
• Stop believing you can think your way out of problems.
• Learn to concentrate on the present moment. It can be helpful to learn mindfulness meditation, as this can produce an artificial state that is similar to flow.
• Take action instead of worrying – it’s harder for worry to cripple a moving target.