No Sheet, Sherlock: How Your Mind is a Fitted Sheet for Your Reality

No Sheet, Sherlock: How Your Mind is a Fitted Sheet for Your Reality


Ah, the fitted sheet. Those ruched corners have caused many a sigh and internal struggle. I've personally never cared to learn how to fold one properly.

I have just enough patience to stuff it in the linen closet and keep it pushin'.  

But my latest encounter with a fitted sheet inspired this post. I frequently study how our bodies and brains have naturally evolved to protect and preserve us.

More specifically, I am fascinated with the brain and it's ability to, for lack of a better phrase, alter our reality-- especially what it perceives as painful. 

In my personal and observed experience I've noticed that a lot of the angst, frustration, fear, bitterness, and anger that a person possesses or carries (speaking of those who tend to take on the responsibility of pleasing/controlling the actions or thoughts of others) are stretched over our reality like a fitted sheet.

That 'sheet' is crafty in its design; shaped like and moving with our reality so we are inclined, perhaps, to think it IS the reality. 

But it isn't the reality.

It's just a layer that covers it-- usually as a means of protection or as a way to understand the world around us. Made up of our individual experiences, biases, logical fallacies, and lifestyles, the sheet tries to make life more comfortable or 'palatable'.

I'll drop the sheet analogy now and replace it with the 'mind'.

Your mind can be quite powerful and persistent-- ceaseless thoughts that speak to the deepest and most vulnerable parts of you.

"Hide this. Ignore that. Protect comfort. Suppress discomfort. This matters and that doesn't. Oppose them. Shame feels too bad. Being wrong feels too bad. Change feels like failure. Failure feels bad. Resist bad. Resist change. I can't protect you if you change. You will lose yourself."

Does any of that feel familiar? Do you struggle with change or growth? Is it hard for you to cope with any level of discomfort-- even for a good reason?

Our minds default to protecting our sense of self and establishing a sense safety. It's not inherently wrong to think about or have "knee-jerk" reactions to certain events or elements of life. However, it can be limiting to go through life without pushing through the messages and into the mystery that is growth.

Fortunately, we were given more control over our minds than any other creature on Earth. 

The mind isn't meant to "rule" alone. It is, like everything else that has ever existed, meant to be in symbiotic relationship; specifically with our bodies and environment. 

I'll use the relationship between the body and the mind as an example.

When we spoil the body with comfort, we not only feed mental dissonance but also stand to lose so much more than just a fit body. Conversely, when we discipline the physical-- prioritizing adequate sleep, nutrition, exercise, mindfulness practice, etc...-- we are better equipped to comfort the fears and worries of the mind and tend to find more happiness and satisfaction with life in general.

My Concession: Giving out comfy pillows, Peleton cycles, and cruciferous vegetables won't fix every issue in our world. 

But my question to you is this-- is it a stretch to think that some of the complex issues we deal with in our society has much to do with lack of quality sleep? or nutritional deficiencies? chronic pain or anxiety? lack of exposure to natural light and nature?

I don't think it's that much of a stretch.

Matter of fact, I could use a short walk myself. 

 

Thanks for reading.

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