Who rules your mind? If you are like most people, it probably isn't you. That would require clarity. That would require discipline. Thoughts are powerful. They determine your experience, and they influence the experience of others. You can choose to be clear and to discipline your mind. The question is: Will you be in charge of what you think about today?

There are plenty of distractions in our multi media world. Much of the "news" we receive is in the form of thinly disguised opinions, or opinions offered as truths. Television, radio, print media, blogs, and social networking have created an environment where almost anyone can become an expert commentator. Opinions fly about, clashing and inciting anger and fear. Singer/entertainer Madonna once said: "Listen, everyone is entitled to my opinion." Today millions of people are seeking to fill our minds with their opinions.

We certainly are entitled to all the opinions we want to hear, but do we really want to feel the anger and fear stirred up by those opinions? You might ask, shouldn't we be involved? Shouldn't we do something about the problems of the world? Getting angry and arguing with your family and friends, or posting your political opinions on Facebook doesn't really solve anything. As former President George H.W. Bush once said: "I have opinions of my own--strong opinions--but I don't always agree with them." Perhaps George was right. We shouldn't become too attached to our own opinions. We need to lighten up and not take ourselves so seriously. Strong opinions are distractions and can be destructive to our peace of mind. They take up space in our thinking that could otherwise be employed toward something constructive.

It is the same with personal conflicts and negative opinions toward the people in our lives. How much time do you spend in angry, hurtful, or blaming thoughts toward family members or people at work? Is that a good use of your time? Thinking is habitual. We tend to replay the same thoughts and memories. Observe your thinking. Can you see it's repetitive nature? Notice how it makes you feel? Which thoughts cause you stress, or anger? Which thoughts bring joy?

I notice that my thoughts are a continuous commentary often evoking anger or fear, and sometimes joy. I am a prisoner of my own thinking until I stop myself, which I do often. I stop myself, become aware of my thoughts, and ask: Does this serve me? Does this help others? Does this thinking help me live the life I want to live? Then I decide what I really want to think about.

It is at this moment that the world opens up to me. It is at this moment I see that I can choose how I respond to others' opinions, or to my own negative stories. I can choose to be at peace. I can choose to listen to and understand another person, no matter how far out their opinions may seem to me. I can look at myself and laugh at my seriousness, reminding myself that I don't know everything.

In the moment that you decide to set your opinions, your fear, and your anger aside, you become powerful. You realize that you are not the victim of the world you see. In this moment, undisturbed by opinions and negativity, your mind is clear. With a clear mind you are now more open to new ideas, to solutions to problems, and to creativity. Ask your Higher Power, or your intuition, or however you define the Inner Voice of wisdom within you, to guide you. You receive as you have asked according to your ability and your will to stay clear and focused. With daily practice, through prayer, meditation, or contemplation, you develop the ability to hear. The outer voices often bring fear and anger. The Inner Voice brings peace. You get to choose. Your mind is your kingdom and you are its ruler.

"I'm still the king of me." Sheryl Crow from her song, Soak up the Sun.

Author's Bio: 

William Frank Diedrich is a speaker, executive coach, and the author of three books including The Road Home: The Journey Beyond the Spiritual Quick Fix. To contact Bill e-mail him at Bill@noblaming.com . To check out his books and CD, go to http://intelligentspirit.com . To enroll in his online classes:
1. Creating Your Ideal Relationship, go to http://intelligentspirit.com/online.html to register for the next class.
2. The Leaders' Edge , go to http://noblaming.com/onlinecourse.html , to register for the next class.