The Mood Elevator

Isn’t it interesting that our moods fluctuate more quickly than our circumstances? I sometimes notice in my own life and in that of my clients that even if there is a current problem, although the circumstances of it don’t change very quickly, mood does. An example of this is when an individual (it seems we are all the same) is dwelling on an event such as a bereavement and there is a storm of sadness and much thinking, quite suddenly in the midst of nostalgia and rumination the doorbell rings and one is swept up into the activity of wondering who has come to visit. Then engaging in a conversation, even if it is with the postman, the feelings and mood depth of five minutes ago change rapidly and are replaced with something quite different. If we receive a letter from a long lost friend we are transported into quite a different set of memories and emotions. If it is a cheque or post card, another scene occurs. This is what I call the ‘mood elevator’.

As a child I remember riding in the lift of the department store with my grandmother (this brings an exhilarating tingle in my neck and spine). We seemed to be in there for ages (although the store only had five floors). We stopped at each floor and as the doors swept open there was in front of us all the wares of that particular department. The toy floor was my favourite, but I was curious concerning the quick glimpse of other worlds like ‘haberdashery’, wondering quite what that term meant.

The child simply observes these things and doesn’t necessarily want to leave the lift and run around the department (except for the toys maybe). However, in our adult lives we tend to dash into each department of our thoughts, memories and nostalgic dreams and inspect each and every item stored in that place. We could emulate the child and simply observe as we go from place to place, just enjoying the moment and the wonder even if we don’t fully comprehend.

The three principles views thoughts as passing bubbles of brain activity, like a train going by and not due to stop at our station. There is something more powerful behind the train, the energy that powers it. See if you can observe the train go by or the doors of the elevator open and close without getting too involved in something so temporary. This practice certainly elevates my mood.

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