Home Wisdom Articles Pujya Gurudevshri Pujya Gurudevshri Insights Thought Management – 1

Thought Management – 1

Everyone wants a stress-free life. Pujya Gurudevshri illuminates that a stress-free life is the fruit of managing our thoughts well. In this article He elucidates seven types of thoughts and in Part 2 He will explain how to manage the adverse category of thoughts

(Part 1 of 2)

Stress isn’t because of hard work, lot of work, no work or tough situations. It is an inability to manage your thoughts. If you can manage them well, there is little or no stress. When doing simple movements of hands, legs, and eyes, you know you have control over them. What about your thoughts? If you work daily a little on your thoughts, then gradually you will learn the art of managing them.

Understand that there are seven types of thoughts:

1. Toxic Thoughts – These are thoughts of anger, frustration, jealousy, criticism, gossip etc. In these thoughts, the focus is on others. In anger you want to hurt someone through your thoughts, words or deeds. In jealousy, a thought of that person arises and you turn wild. E.g. you are angry with your spouse and if someone praises him/her, you will react – ‘ask him/her to be good like this whole day.’

2. Negative Thoughts – In these thoughts you alone are in your focus. These thoughts are of hurt feelings, self-doubt, fear, anxiety, low self-confidence; be it in studies, business etc. They create negative emotions and eventually lower your inner state. E.g. ‘Nobody loves me.’ ‘I am unworthy.’ ‘Why me?’ etc.

3. Waste Thoughts – Unnecessary thoughts that keep popping up when you are doing something. They are called waste thoughts because at that time they are defocusing you from your work at hand. E.g. you are studying and you get a thought, ‘what would be the match score now?’. Planning during prayers is a waste thought. That doesn’t mean sports, of planning are bad. It only means don’t focus on them now. After your task is completed you may think about them in detail, but not now.

4. Necessary Thoughts – These are thoughts regarding work at hand. Say, you are sitting in your living room and you want to go to the kitchen, and you think ‘I must get up from here.’ This is a necessary thought, it prompts you to fulfil your task. If you are leaving for a yoga class, thoughts regarding carrying a mat etc. are necessary thoughts. If you don’t have necessary thoughts, you will end up missing on what you need to do.

5. Right Thoughts – These thoughts make you know things as they are. E.g. you are angry and have the thought, ‘I am angry.’ You see someone helping another person, and your thoughts reflect the same. You try your best in doing a task and you failed, the mind says, ‘I did not succeed in this task.’ In short, a right thought is thinking or knowing exactly the way it has happened. Usually, you think what your mind interprets about things, people and situations rather than knowing them as they are.

6. Positive Thoughts – The moment you think these thoughts, you experience peace, joy, enthusiasm, positivity. These thoughts follow right thoughts. E.g. you could not do well in your exams, right thoughts make you perceive it correctly and then positive thoughts say, ‘so what if I couldn’t do well this time. This is not the end of life. I will put in more effort and if needed take help from others and do well next time.’ Such thoughts do not let toxic, negative or waste thoughts thrive in you.

7. Elevated Thoughts – These are spiritual thoughts. Like thinking about soul and role; contemplating on attributes of the pure soul like peace, love, knowledge etc; thoughts regarding the nature of God, religion etc.. These thoughts arise naturally when you have consistently nurtured and nourished necessary, right and positive thoughts. These spiritually elevating thoughts lead to the state transcending the mind, bringing an experience of your blissful Self.

Out of the seven types of thoughts, on one side are toxic, negative and waste thoughts. Necessary thoughts are neutral. On the other side are the last three – right, positive and elevated thoughts. Your endeavour should be to become aware of the thoughts running in your mind, identify their type, analyse them and gradually move from toxic thoughts to elevated thoughts; and eventually to the state beyond the mind.

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