“How to control your mind?” —This particular predicament has become a rather common household jargon. The person who triumphs in this mammoth task makes his life simpler, more fun, and a lot happier. Those who let the mind control them live a grueling, resentful, and miserable life.
Our minds are naturally wired to do the things that give us a sense of pleasure and delight, and snub the things that give us pain and hardships. But as we all know that for good things to come our way, we gotta swim ourselves through a pool of blood, sweat, and tears—which isn’t always a walk in the park. And of course, all the bad habits give us instant gratification which is why we are hooked to them so badly in the first place.
No one would indulge in smoking or drinking if it didn’t give them an instant source of joy and bliss. Consequently, everyone would indulge in doing the work they know is good for them, if it was a piece of cake. That’s why it’s imperative one learns to control the mind or be ready to face the music.
The Million Dollar Question
So, the million-dollar, uh, in fact, the billion-dollar question is how to control the mind or make the mind understand to do the things which are not fun but are actually beneficial for us. Because if somehow we could decipher this zodiac code, then we can practically make our own heaven in this game of life.
The only permanent solution—the ultimate weapon to fight this devil off is Intelligence. Only our own intelligence can control the mind, for good. The stronger and deeper your intelligence becomes, the more profoundly you will be able to guide and steer your mind. As of now, our intelligence is still rudimentary and unsophisticated, which is why it succumbs to the whims and futile fetishes of the mind every now and then.
Addicted is what we have become. Addicted to seeing things a particular way—addicted to thinking in a closed box, addicted to doing things the way you always have been, addicted to believing that your way is the only way. We don’t have any control left over us whatsoever. Our actions and our thinking have been adjusted and altered according to our old and outdated habits. Habits, which took years to form, aren’t capable of changing themselves in a snap of fingers—it’s gonna take some time.
So, don’t live under the misguided impression or expect that you are gonna change yourself totally just after reading this article. But at the same time, don’t get distressed if you are unable to bring about a change, you so dearly want to, in your life.
The first step involves saying it to your mind, “Yeah, all this shit is actually right, and when I know what’s right and what’s not, then I have to imbibe the goodies in my life and eliminate the habits that are ruining my life.”
Basically, it’s about acknowledging the fact that it’s us who are somewhere at fault which is why our lives are such a big mess. Most people think it’s the fault of other people, situations, luck, destiny, and whatnot—which is why they are stuck and are deprived of growth. So, the right thing is perhaps ‘this thinking’, which needs to be converted into habits. And that’s how you empower your intelligence—by thinking about the right things.
Stop Deteriorating your Intelligence
Intelligence is the only leash that can help control the mind effectively, which is why it’s of paramount importance to not let our intelligence degenerate. Thinking about all the foolish, insane, nonsensical, irrational, and zany things all the time has to stop which has contributed to weakening and deteriorating our Intelligence. The result is that our minds have taken undue advantage of this.
“I feel like drinking and then I am gonna impress my friends with my insane driving skills.” People do such crazy things because their minds have overpowered their intelligence. It’s imperative for such people to elevate their intelligence to put a leash on their wild minds. An intelligent person will have the power to control the mind’s wonkiness and do what’s right for him and society. Folks who can’t control their minds are not only a threat to themselves but also to the whole society.
The world will feed you with the information the way it always had— that kind that suits your old habits to make you feel good, hindering you from growing. Now, it’s up to you. You gotta choose the right source of information you wanna intake, in order to change your habits accordingly. This will mark the beginning of your transformation.
And the best part is that, as you see your own self transforming into something better, the happiness and joy you are gonna experience witnessing it will be a thousand times more powerful than what you are gonna get from those nasty little pleasures you keep running after.
An alcoholic who successfully becomes sober will feel more blissful and ecstatic than someone who’s unable to overcome that hurdle because he’s so effing addicted. A drug addict will be proud of himself when he sees himself getting rid of his nasty habit. A teen, who had fallen prey to smartphone addiction, will feel more satisfied and exalted coming out of the web he was tangled in.
The sense of achievement that you feel when you overcome your fear or your bad habits and finally do the right thing will be inexpressible in words. And once this becomes your habit, then your core center will shift from extracting pleasure doing the wrong things to enhancing yourself doing the right things. Your whole life will take a U-turn, for good, once you start enjoying and having fun doing the right things, speaking the truth, and taking a stand where deemed necessary. And all this can and will happen, only if you escalate your intelligence.
Don’t Underestimate your Intelligence
Many of us might feel like the mind is insanely powerful. And that’s true. But our intelligence has the potential to be a hell of a lot more powerful than our minds. Let me give you a small relatable example to help you realize the power of intelligence.
When you look at your wife and when you look at your sister, you feel entirely different—the reactions and hormones triggered are totally distinct. Any guesses where are these relationships defined?
Yeah, it’s your intelligence that draws the line. The reason you don’t feel the same when you look at your sister as you feel when you look at your wife is that your intelligence demarcates the two relationships.
Your mind, alone, doesn’t differentiate the two. Your wife and your sister both are just a body for your mind. But since it’s so well defined in our intelligence, the same kind of bodies look different to us—the emotions triggered when you touch your sister will be different from when you touch your wife.
That’s how powerful and influential our intelligence is. Once you unleash its full potential, the mind doesn’t stand a chance in hell in front of your intelligence.
The INFIDELITY Predicament
The infinite flow of information that’s currently out there along with the media, the kinds of movies & TV shows we are consuming, all together can mess one up from top to bottom and can shake up one’s entire life. People who indulge in the ‘worldly talks’ all the time don’t even realize that they are just slumping their intelligence, allowing the mind to take over. And those who take their life decisions according to what their mind says are unknowingly signing their own death warrant. They may not realize it now, but eventually, they will.
Apparently, this is the reason behind almost all the ruckus going on in the world. People cheating on their spouses. Why? Because they are listening to their monkey minds. An intelligent person wouldn’t let his mind tell him what to do and what not to do.
Just to be clear, the mind here involves all your feelings, emotions, and thoughts. You look at someone, and you get aroused, so much that your temporary feelings make you indulge in infidelity. That’s a ‘mind person’ whereas an ‘intelligent person’ would remain impervious to such incoming data. They prefer long-term commitment over a few moments of self-gratification.
Now some people combat this, by trying to stop their mind from thinking about the other person, but what they miserably fail to understand is that the more you try and stop it, the more it will run after the other person. The thing is that the mind isn’t in danger, the mind is the danger. (Finally a breaking bad reference, phew)
This is obviously a very poor and futile way to control your mind. Your mind is going apeshit over someone else, it’s time to take a step back and bring in the intelligence. See the reality as it is, and go to the end of it. Will you end up happier or distressed? You don’t wanna ride two horses at the same time, and neither do you wanna fall between the two stools.
Ask yourselves some serious questions, “Is my self-gratification more important than a long-term healthy relationship?”, “Why do I wanna cheat on my partner when I am already serious about him/her”?
Your mind is not used to analyzing the future consequences of your present actions. But once you let the intelligence do the work, you will automatically come to your senses and do what’s actually right for you. When it becomes clear and you start seeing the loopholes of your “plan”, then you don’t have to try to stop yourself, your mind will automatically lay down its weapons once it sees the imminent danger. And only the intelligence can intimate the mind about it.
But as per the present reality, all the mind is able to see is fun, pleasure, and gratification because our intelligence is vacationing on the island “I will screw your life”. Well, it’s high time you tell the intelligence the three magic words, “I am screwed” and bring it back.
Don’t Jump off A Cliff without a Parachute
Now, another very important thing to remember is that, know your capacity and act accordingly. Don’t take the leap of faith if you don’t have faith or don’t jump off a clip unless you are sure you have a parachute.
What do I actually mean by this is that don’t make your mind do something insanely extreme. For instance, you are an avid smoker, and let’s say you wanna call it quits. So now, don’t just expect your mind to drop it the very next day. You might be able to suppress your desires for a day or two, but the third day you will go all fast and furious over cigarettes, succumbing to your mind, and forgetting you even read all this.
Just because you read this article, doesn’t mean you have instantly got some superhuman abilities to do anything with your intelligence with a snap of your fingers. It’s a lifelong process, there are no shortcuts to leap your way out of it. So, don’t expect that you will change your life altogether the next day. Start small, take baby steps in the beginning.
Your habits took an awful lot of time to develop and become what they have become today, so it’s kinda naive to think that you will be able to break free of them overnight. Even intelligence is all about knowing how much to push the mind without disturbing the whole foundation. Becoming 1% better every day is a whole lot better than aiming to become 20% better but failing miserably and getting worse.
That’s how you cheat your mind with intelligence, with slight and minor changes. Consistency and patience are the game-changers. If you are consistent with improving yourself every day, no matter how insignificant, and are able to hold your patience, then you become Unstoppable. The mind doesn’t see its own loopholes and shortcomings. Only your intelligence can, which makes it the best tool to control the mind, and that’s how you can make things better in your life.
The Diet of Intelligence
The mind feeds on experiences. It becomes stronger, bigger, and larger as you serve it with the experiences that it enjoys. If today you like to smoke 1 cigarette, then the mind will ask for 2 tomorrow, and it will keep on increasing its appetite likewise. Your mind won’t let you go from 5 shots of tequila back to 1 shot. That’s how the mind functions. The mind doesn’t give a damn if the experiences are good or bad, it doesn’t care if your lungs are burned to a crisp—as long as it is able to extract fun it will bite it.
Now, intelligence on the other hand feeds on facts, figures, information, laws, and reality. Intelligence is all about grasping the right set of knowledge in any and every aspect of life. Once you feed what the intelligence needs, and you make it a habit of yours to listen, read, think, and understand the right kind of stuff, then that’s how you are boosting your intelligence. The stronger your intelligence gets, the more strongly you will be able to control your mind, and the better your life will get.
Well, we all have heard the famous Uncle Ben’s quote, “With great power comes great responsibility” but ever wondered how can a normal guy possess this ‘great power’? Yeah, you guessed it. “With great intelligence comes great power.” And the best part? You don’t even need a spider bite for it.
Once your intelligence blossoms, and you control your mind, you will have this epiphany that both the pleasurable and painful sensations are good for you. It’s how nature works and is actually a part of the bigger picture.
Pain and Pleasure
If a kid puts his palm over the fire, he will feel a sensation that will make him pull his hand out, which is a good thing. Had there been no painful sensation, his hand would have burned to a crisp. When you feel body pain at certain parts, then it’s probably an indication the body is trying to give you to take care of it before things go out of hand. So, even these ‘painful’ sensations are ultimately just sensations that are essential for our survival. One doesn’t need to run away from them.
Similarly, experiencing pleasurable sensations is not the problem, but getting totally attached to it and going to any extent just to feel those sensations is the problem. You feel hungry, you eat, you feel good. So far, all good. But it becomes a problem when one indulges in gluttony trying to fill your infinite void with pleasurable sensations.
Now, just like when the body is hurt, we experience the body pain; similarly, when the mind is hurt, we experience distress and despondency. And since we just established the fact that body pain can be actually good for us at times, similarly sadness can also be actually helpful for us too. It might be telling us that our thinking needs to change.
Whenever our thinking is not aligned with reality, we experience grief and sorrow. When we identify ourselves with lies, we lose control of the mind and bring misery to our own life. So, the next time you get covered under the clouds of gloom, instead of taking shelter by running away or ignoring it, it’s time for you to introspect and check what’s going on with your mind.
The Neutral State
In our lives, there are pleasure moments, there are painful moments. there are also extremely pleasurable moments, along with extremely painful moments. But what happens the rest of the time? What do we do when we are in a neutral state, which is actually the majority of our time? Is there a way to utilize this neutral state better? Can you control your mind being in this state? Is there any chance that we can literally be blissful from the inside even when we are neutral?
The answer to all those questions is a big fat bowl of YES. If you can learn to become happy in your neutral state, then you can’t even imagine how peaceful your life will become. All the daily hustle-bustle of life, the stress, the anxiety, will come to an all-time low. This is probably the highest state to achieve when it comes to controlling your mind—the ultimate goal. But hey, achieving this state requires an enormous amount of patience and intelligence.
The environment we grew up in, is the exact opposite—it doesn’t want you to sit idle, it wants you to keep on doing something or the other all the time. Probably this is why you will get bored with this ‘being happy doing nothing’ philosophy. You will detest every minute of it in the beginning. We keep on oscillating our entire lives, living between the two extremes, either to fulfill a desire to gain pleasurable experience or to avoid painful experiences by living under the umbrella of fear. But we have no idea what to do when the oscillatory bob comes to its mean position.
Now, I am sure most of you have no idea what the hell I am talking about here, and I don’t blame you. Hardly anyone talks about stuff like this. Anyway, this neutral state, the permanent state is nothing but the sound of silence—yeah, all roads lead here only at the end of the day. (Read this article, to know what this sound is all about.)
During the time when there is no pleasurable or painful sensation, all you are left with is this pretty little sound—the only permanent entity of this universe. We are not aware of this or don’t think about it because our intelligence is still stuck at stage 1. Our minds can’t comprehend things like the sound of silence because of the fact that it’s formless. Our minds can only think about something that has a form. But when it sees something beyond forms, it deviates its attention back to its old habits.
Only your intelligence can differentiate between what’s temporary and what’s permanent. And only an intelligent mind will identify itself from something permanent instead of getting attached to the temporary.
Ever thought about where is this sound coming from? There is no wi-fi, or wire, or some other advanced AI technology that’s running this thing. Then where the hell is it coming from? And why is everyone able to heart it, from a 5yr old to an 80yr old? What has given birth to it, and why does it never die? What’s the source of this sound? Is this sound only our real identity?
We don’t think about any of this because we are busy doing other things all the time. Things that are temporary, things that can’t be saved, things that are bound to change with time. Once you fall in love with this sound—the thing that can’t be obliterated, the thing that always remains the same, come what may, the thing that will always be there with you no matter what—your mind will automatically be in control.
The problem of mankind isn’t that we are powerless, defenseless, useless, and helpless creatures. The actual problem is that we are infinite beings with unlimited powers who can do anything but are oblivious of this fact. We have to know our true selves.
It’s exactly like a God, who has the power to do anything, has forgotten that he is the God and believes that he is a mortal, petty creature. Now, what can we do about such a God?
This is why it’s of paramount importance to elevate your intelligence by doing everything—from your career to your health to your relationships—to the best of your abilities, in order to ultimately grasp the truth about yourself and ask the pertinent question, “Who am I?” to control your mind once and for all. That’s the only permanent solution to this predicament.
The mind is a smart servant who will do anything with its power to make you forget that you are the real master.
Other Articles I wrote on “MIND”:
- The Human Mind —Make the most of It
- How to Calm your Mind once and for all?
- Things you Didn’t know about Mind, Ego, and Enlightenment