Saturday, July 7, 2012

Do NOT Picture a Purple Elephant!

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It is another gorgeous morning here in my beloved California with high temps all week. I am sitting in my backyard gulping glasses of iced tea because we are out of coffee and I am trying to escape the coffee withdrawal headache that is lingering around the outer edges of my head.



I've been working on a Guest Post for 5 Minutes for Faith on taking our thoughts captive and I know that I need to keep the article at 500 words or less. But the more I work on it the more words keep adding up! There is a famous saying among writers that we must "kill our little darlings" - meaning we need to edit ruthlessly and delete the sentences and sometimes whole paragraphs even though we love them dearly.

Having too many words and ideas for a project is better than staring at an empty screen with zero words on it though, and I love the challenge of cutting away the extra verbiage in order to craft a piece that is worthy of a great site like 5 Minutes for Faith. 

But I also love this message and I am living it now, so ideas keep popping up as I go through my day and I practice 'taking my thoughts captive." For instance what about these word-pictures to describe controlling our thought life?:

Taking our thoughts captive is like:
  • A pre-school playground after the sugary snack.
  • Telling yourself not to picture a purple elephant.
  • Keeping 25 kittens in a box.
  • Nailing jello to a tree.
  • The "Octomom" must feel all the time!
  • What a sheep dog must feel like while corralling the sheep.
I know that it is possible and probably much easier than any of those examples. I also know that it takes intentional choosing and cannot be done in a lazy or half-hearted style. And it cannot be done alone or simply by using our will power. 

We need a secret weapon...

Now if could just get that giant purple elephant to go away!


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PS-If all goes well, my article will be live on July 10th!

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4 comments:

  1. Can't wait to read! Reading post while on the way to Maine- soon I will be unplugged. Final countdown!

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  2. THat was a stimulating thought. I needed that. I've been away from my blog for several days, and feeling like I've abandoned my baby and all my friends. I will be back, but we've been happily busy. I love your purple elephant, even if it really isn't one!

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  3. There are many of us looking for the answers on how exactly to take our thoughts captive on a more-than-temporary basis. How I wish to make it a permanant habit in my life without requiring so much energy! I'm looking forward to what you have to say.

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  4. This is an interesting post. I sometimes feel that I am "nailing jello to a tree." I have tried to call an office for almost three hours this morning and no one is there. I spent part of last week doing the same exercise with another company.

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All comments are good comments!

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