are you willing to have your mind changed?

words & photo by Brian Thompson.

some people have a much easier time than others figuring out their life’s problems and moving beyond their struggles.

i’ve come to realize that the ease in which a person deals with their unhappiness comes down to how they answer one very simple, yet specific and powerful question.

are you willing to have your mind changed?

if you’re feeling stuck in life, it’s only because your thoughts are too. if you find yourself unable to move past a certain obstacle, it’s because of the rigidity of your beliefs that surround it.

when you convince yourself that something is unsolvable, then that is exactly what it becomes. if you are adamant that something is unmovable, then you will push no more.

when you give up on something, you become stiff and set in your ways. you become stubborn with your unmovable point of view. you become unwilling to consider other perspectives, so you stop looking for solutions. you are defeated, trapped with no way out — and you suffer in your refusal to accept it.

if you are convinced that every opinion you have is the only and absolute one, then you will be destined for a life of struggle and misery. you will be faced with one confrontation after the next, in both the outer world, and your inner self too.

when you believe all of your thoughts are correct, everything becomes a struggle.

however, if a person is humble, suffering has nothing to hang to. sure, you’ll still experience pain and worry, but it won’t linger indefinitely. solutions will present themselves, where before there were none.

through humility, our pain fades to reveal the truth of our problems, and our answers become clear.

when you are willing to have your mind changed, you are able to admit that you are wrong, allowing you to take responsibility for wherever you choose to go next. you realize that how you feel is a choice, and that the power to change how you feel lies within you.

when you are open to hearing the truth without attaching your ego onto your opinion — even when it arises from within the stillness of your own self-reflecting mind — you become inspired to make positive changes to any behaviour that was causing you to struggle.

with an open mind, you become receptive to anything life throws at you. you’re able to respond quickly, without hesitation — without suffering.

this is called, having a beginner’s mind.

"If your mind is empty, it is always ready for anything, it is open to everything. In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities, but in the expert's mind there are few."

— Shunryu Suzuki