“I have the patience to wait until my mud settles and my water is clear.”Davidji on Insight Timer
Metacognition was one of two vocabulary words I’d teach my second- and third-graders the first week of school. The other word was persevere. These words established the norms for our classroom. Thinking about one’s thinking — and not giving up — set the stage for each year of learning.
Using the Frayer model for learning new vocabulary, young students would write examples and non-examples of metacognition. Their examples included “explaining how you got the answer to a (math) story problem.” Non-examples included “copying your answer from somebody.” One of my favorite examples was “trying to explain to (the school principal) what you were thinking when you hit (a classmate).”
Metacognition is critical when trying to sift through the sediment that mucks up our lives. Understanding our thinking — what we’re telling ourselves, what we’re really feeling, and our motivations — is not an easy or quick task. Meditation and journaling are tools that can help us tap into the mother lode of subconscious connections that inform our choices and actions. Meditation, with its requisite stillness, is difficult for me. The free guided meditations on Insight Timer are an aid I use (sometimes with unexpected results), and I recently added the guided meditations of Davidji to my morning practice.
Thinking about our own thinking, and challenging or questioning those thoughts, requires patience and commitment and effort. Mud takes a while to settle. Clarity can be elusive, especially when we filter our thoughts through past hurts and future predictions.
“I agree that I cannot step into the past to change it. I agree that I cannot step into the future to force it.”Davidji on Insight Timer
In giving myself permission to live an authentic life, I understand that copying someone else’s answer to living will only cheat me of the life that’s right for me. Our authentic life is on the other side of a deep understanding of who we are, what we want, and why. Thinking about my thinking revealed patterns of self-sabotage and self-critical storytelling that I’m still trying to address. It’s a journey. One I’ll continue to navigate even as I start my “new” life in Portugal. The silt, sand, and soil of my 62 years haven’t settled yet. There will always be some sudden disturbance that stirs up our sediment, but being mindful of our thinking aids the settling. Our water runs clearer as it flows down rocky streams of thought into a pool of understanding.
I am not a patient person. I want my answers yesterday. I want clarity and understanding now. But, as with anything worth doing, thinking about your thinking takes time. Sifting through your thoughts as you slog through the mud in your mind can be messy, painful, dirty work. You will stumble, backtrack, and lose your way. Searching for clear waters takes time and perseverance. Examining your thought processes can reveal and silence the asshole voice in your head, and lead to a newfound sense of peace and self-awareness. Metacognition can set the stage for the most important learning of all. Learning to be yourself.
“I give myself permission to show up right now as my best, most brilliant, most creative expression of myself.”Davidji on Insight Timer
Unpacking Your Thinking Can Reveal:
- Emotional fault lines that trip up your thoughts.
- Negative influences from a voice that doesn’t serve you.
- Fear masquerading as fact.
- Distorted perception from buried trauma.
- Default thinking that needs to be reset.
What about you? What discoveries have you made by unpacking your thinking?
Thank you to blogger Wynne of Surprised by Joy for having a positive impact on my thinking.
If you enjoyed this please remember to Share, Like, Follow, Comment, Subscribe. (This is my “call to action” I’m supposed to include in every post. Thanks so much for your support!) ❤