When Thoughts Aren't Always Things: A Lesson from Dreams
Us humans - man, aren’t we thoughtful?
I mean thoughtful in that Every. Single. Thing. Must be Explained. Rationalized. Planned. Understood.
There’s a phrase I had never heard, until I met my husband:
“Thoughts are things.”
He’s been saying that to the people he has coached, and he has said it to me when I verbalize all the negative thoughts I have. “Thoughts are things,” he’d say. Whattheheck are you talking about?
Then, I starting thinking about his silly phrase. And I’d see it exemplified over and over again on this site called “Thoughts Become Things” where you can sign up for Notes From the Universe. It’s like the whole world started conspiring to make me believe that my thoughts can become (are becoming) real things in my life.
And it made me really think about, well, what I am thinking. How I talk to myself is what I became. What I told myself was true, became my reality.
I’m gonna be real with you for a minute.
A couple weeks ago, I was talking to my husband about wanting to be and do something more in my work life than go to an office everyday. I wanted to help and better and serve others. With everything I had gone through and learned throughout my years, I know this is what I need to be doing.
Then later in that week, something happened to disrupt my world: my office closed. Everyone was let go. Effective immediately. Pack up your stuff. No time to find a new job. Good luck.
It sucked. Sucks still, even. But in that negative space, I craved making meaning out of what had happened. Maybe this is the time I make that leap, I thought. Maybe it’s the push I need to start my business and make something of myself, an office cube-less life.
This is the universe telling me I have my chance to make “things” out of my “thoughts.”
Maybe. But it’s also up to me to make these “things” happen. I can’t just sit here and think about what I’m wishing for.
After this occurred, I became very motivated and, somehow, somewhat excited. But as the days pass, with nothing really to prove from my efforts, of course the discouragement has set in.
And maybe because at this time, my thoughts are real and far-reaching, I started having dreams. Vivid, deja vu- worthy dreams. And mostly, dreams about death - nightmares. Every night, I would do something horrific, or something terrifying would happen to me. I’d wake up and relive this.
My thoughts: what did they mean?
Are my thoughts things here? Does it mean anything?
Of course, people started urging me to look into this and look up what dreams about death meant! Did it have to mean anything? Apparently dreams about death represent an ending of something. In my case, this meant a job.
And this is why thoughts don’t always have to be things.
Because if you’ve read anything about meanings of dreams, you’ll see that there is always a sort of asterisk that says something like, “While this is what it typically means, dreams always give us the opportunity to learn something. Learn what’s going on for you. Why? How? What do you want to make of it?”
The thoughts, in this case your dreams, give way to more thoughts.
And then you have the power to move into action. You actually do! Isn’t that an amazing thought?
Scary, sure. But this is the same way that losing my job and merely waiting and wishing for my business to take off because that’s what I’m thinking... isn’t realistic.
And while I do believe at some level, thoughts are things, I also believe that because we are thoughtful creatures, we have the choice to own and empower our thoughts (or not!).
Because thoughts become things only if we have the courage to face them. Only if we have the strength and resilience to say, “Okay, I’ve been thinking about it long enough. Time to step up and do the dang thing."
How we speak inside does reflect on our external worlds, but how? Because the universe just says so? Or, because we act as though it's true and then make it happen?