The voices I am referring to are the ones you hear in your head.
But isnâ€™t that a sign of insanity? I mean we read in the media about people who listen to voices and end up as notorious serial killers. Some land up in state institutions where they are labelled as insane whilst others continue to lead â€˜ordinaryâ€™ lives. Others convince sane people to join them as evidenced in the number of cults in recent times which ended violently.
I guess everyone hears voices but it depends on the definition. We tend to hear the words of wisdom from our parents or peers when we are faced with difficult decisions.
The voice you will hear the most is the voice of your thoughts.
I looked at the significance of thoughts and the role they play in our lives and how they are linked to the decision making process.
Iâ€™ve looked at the role of your conscience and how it directs your life as well as the fact that one can be misled by your conscience if you have damaged it.
Youâ€™ll find that if you take time to listen carefully to the voice that never ceases in your head, it is one of constant reasoning and calls for decisions all the time.
A typical internal conversation might be as follows:
Iâ€™ve got to get that report ready for the meeting tomorrow but Sylvie is holding it up.
I wish sheâ€™d just get off the phone and do some work for a change.
She never seems to do anything important until the last minute and Iâ€™ll be blamed for the poor quality of the report when I finally get it done.
I guess Iâ€™ll have to work overtime again tonight and boy James will be ticked off with me.
Heâ€™s often said I spend more time at work than I do with him.
I wonder if he really loves me anymore or whether the thrill of our engagement has worn off?
He seems to be very distant nowadays.
Why did he bring me flowers last night?
Is he seeing someone else?
Why did he ask me about taking up membership at the gym?
Does he think Iâ€™m fat or something?
Bloody men! Â You can never please them!
The above is a fictitious series of thoughts that link randomly onto one another.
The person has a report to complete and yet her thoughts ramble onto her relationship and why men are so difficult.
An interesting exercise is to stop where you are right now and back track to the original thought you had which set you on the path to your current thought.
It is quite fascinating when you follow the thought trails as it also reveals a lot about what is in your heart. You can often trace patterns in your thought life which reveal what you find pleasant to think about or whether you are in self destruct mode. These patterns can also show how much you are engrained in certain habits.
Most of your thoughts are coloured with emotions which will either make or break you.
I often wonder about positive thinking and its benefits. Is it possible to be a happy, balanced person and have endless negative thoughts charged with bad emotions?
Would the two forces cancel one another out or would you be very confused?
I do know people who have two sides to them. Some present a balanced face to the world and yet they show a totally different face when they are alone or with people they can let their guard down.
Is it a survival mechanism in our society or is it deliberate deception?
When people commit suicide, sometimes those closest to them are shocked as it is completely out of character and yet it could be that that person has been living like Janus (having two opposite faces â€“ being negative and positive).
Back to voices and a few questions to keep you awake at night.
- Does the voice you hear condemn you or commend you?
Are you able to change the tone of this voice or is it beyond your control?
- Are you habitually following a certain train of thought?
Can you change this habit and create a better way of thinking?
- Do you believe that your thoughts create habits and affect your way of life?
Is there any merit to positive and negative thinking or are they just gimmicks / psychological jargon?
- What emotions do the voice you listen to evoke?
What images do they promote in your mind?
- Is it possible to change your life around by changing your thoughts?
What do you think?
Sometimes I lay awake at night and wonder ‘Just where did I go wrong?’
Then a voice comes to me and says, ‘This is going to take more than one night’.