“Erase the false impressions from your mind by constantly saying to yourself, I have it in my soul to keep out any evil, desire or any kind of disturbance–instead, seeing the true nature of things, I will give them only their due. Always remember this power that nature gave you.” ~ Marcus Aurelius, Meditations, 8.29
Our minds are always in motion. We are either can be processing things that are going on around us, or we are in our own heads – which can be dangerous for some of us. I know I am personally notorious for negative self-talk. So, it is important to come up with a mantra for some situations. A mantra will help you focus and allow random thoughts to pass on by.
I’ll give one example that worked for me. On one of my runs, I was about to run the farthest I’ve gone, without stopping, in years. However, in the last half mile my legs were so heavy and I just felt like stopping and walking the rest of the way and end the misery. But, then the song “Eye of the Tiger” by Survivor came on. The critical scene from Rocky III popped in my head, when Rocky came back against Clubber Lang. After taking everything Clubber could give, Rocky dug deep and began taunting Clubber saying, “You ain’t so bad! You ain’t so bad!” So as I was feeling the pain of my run, I began taunting the pain in my legs and my breath, saying “You ain’t so bad!” over and over again. Not only did I finish without stopping, but I actually finished strong and picked up speed, and was sprinting towards the end. Never underestimate the power of a mantra! Or of Rocky! Or of a kick-ass Survivor tune!