It is necessary to monitor and analyse our thoughts regularly. The attempt to challenge negative thoughts by replacing them with positive, motivating and reassuring ones helps us focus on the present moment and enjoy activities that give us comfort and joy, diverting our attention away from negative thoughts.
By Noura bint Faisal Al-Shaaban
Aristotle once said: “My problems with myself largely exceed those with any other creature.” All of this is caused, first and foremost, by the ideas that flow into our minds and wander like wild horses that need to be tamed.
Thinking is the soul's dialogue with itself through a mental motion and a perceiving power through which a person discovers issues unknown to him, a matter which he searches for and aims to collect. So, his ideas and knowledge in life grow. Man does not obtain knowledge until after he learns how to think.
Everything that comes to mind regarding opinions through contemplation and reflection and what comes to the human mind, including solutions, innovative suggestions, or analyses of facts and events, is a thinking process. The ability of a person to generate ideas is associated with his ability to conclude and express himself.
Through my research, I found that what the mind thinks of affects all the external organs of the body, such as facial expressions and body movements, as well as the body's internal organs. Inevitably, feelings are the natural reaction to our thoughts.
God Almighty has given us the ability to control our thoughts because the idea has a mighty power that may cause happiness and comfort if used positively and may cause sadness, depression and anxiety. It also affects the level of energy, focus and performance.
Hence, the seeds of thinking you plant in your mind will primarily affect your lifestyle. Thoughts can transcend time and can be activated anytime and anywhere at a speed that exceeds the speed of light. Reason helps us focus on a specific idea only because it can think of nothing else at a fixed time. You know that thought greatly influences mind, behaviour, body, and feelings, and its effect is a multidimensional process.
The question raised now: "How do we control the negative thoughts flowing into the mind?"
Through my experience in this field, I used to advise my trainees to eliminate negative thoughts, gradually follow specific steps, and start with the awareness stage. Being aware of our thoughts is a significant step in controlling them. It is necessary to monitor and analyse our thinking regularly.
The attempt to challenge negative thoughts by replacing them with positive, motivating and reassuring ones helps us focus on the present moment and enjoy activities that give us comfort and joy, a matter which diverts our attention away from negative thoughts. It was reported that our prophet (PBUH) liked good omens.
We should enable our minds to abound with positive content, such as valuable books and inspiring films; we should also form a circle of positive relationships, interact with people who inspire and support us, get enough sleep, regular exercise and healthy nutrition. All such things affect our mental and physical condition in positive ways. We should not hesitate to seek the help of our close friends or specialists such as psychotherapists because this is one of the best practices that nourish the mind with positivity.
Our country needs minds that produce renaissance, developmental and practical ideas that push them towards civilisation. The origin of inventions and innovations is an idea on which the future is based.
Some may, sometimes, underestimate the idea. Still, true success rests on it, and all the achievements around us were initially an idea planted in fertile soil, irrigated with the water of diligence, and crowned with triumph.
In our country, there are many ideas that, as soon as they grow up, turn into opportunities, which bring benefit and goodness to their owners. Afterwards, these ideas become a role model. Prosperity depends on the competition of ideas and not on monopoly.
It is based on the principle of persuasion and not on subjugation, and when this principle is lost, thinking turns into a repressive ideology that extinguishes supposed, freezes the mind, paralyses culture and pushes it to petrifaction.
Thank God we have an inspiring, supportive and encouraging leadership…then, comes the role of our wild horses to fully draw a bright future.
Nourah Alshaban, a Former Member of the Saudi Shura Council, specialises in business development and public relations. She spoke on several topics about creating positive change at more than 35 internationaland 50 regional conferences.