The Unconscious Yearning

THOUGHTS – we all have ’em! And lots and lots of ’em!

Up to 70,000 of them a day so they say! “Your brain is a three pound universe that processes 70,000 thoughts each day using 100 billion neurons that connect at more than 500 trillion points through synapses that travel 300 miles/hour” (

What is it that makes some of those thoughts stick with us though?

We could be looking out the window, like I am now … and see a naked tree, a snow-capped mountain, a shovel standing against the bbq, a trampoline that’s been still all winter, or the ranger parked on the freshly unveiled dirt. The snow is melting. Going going gone. The cool crisp winter season is transforming right in front of me, to a new fresh spring.

But then a few white honking birds fly by in the distance and catch my eyes. It’s a few swans coming in for a landing on their migratory route to northern Alaska. So I start to focus on these majestic creatures, I see how they are together. It brings a smile to my face. They land one after another … like a big happy family travelling together on their journey. Knowing that each of them have a role to keep the flock together. They have each other’s back, literally. They fly, swim, eat, sleep, live together. Forever. They are part of a family, a tribe. I sit and watch as 2,200 swans gather and feed giving themselves the fuel they’ll need for the next leg. I feel fortunate to experience this. But a pang of jealousy arises as I reflect on this species, and how they stay together in their lives, on their journey together, for the long haul. How very, very cool.

And then my eyes drift and there is that snow covered mountain again, before the blue sky of this early Saturday morning.

What is behind those thoughts that we choose to stick with?

I’m going to go back to the swans, and reflect on my thoughts that came up. It is as if a deep longing was unfolding through the actions of these wild birds. In this case, the swans unpacked a sense of freedom and belonging, of respect and dedication. They came and went as they pleased, yet they stuck together. The travel together. For their whole life. Perhaps there is a knowing, deep in my heart, that I longingly yearn for that. Perhaps it isa n unconscious yearning … which has now surfaced.

My unconscious yearning.

We have so many thoughts – why do we choose to dwell on the thoughts that we dwell on?

It’s an unconscious yearning.

My unconscious yearning is to have freedom, family that travels the long haul, that sense of forever belonging. After all, that’s what we all want, right? To belong. With family, friends, work, community. It is our birth right after all. Coming into this world we don’t only want it, but we need that love and sense of belonging.

What if we don’t get it … then what?

What if we are overlooked, ignored, left behind, belittled, bullied or made insignificant?

What if we just don’t meet the standards of everyone else? What if we don’t meet their expectations?

What if we don’t meet our own?

What happens? We fall into the valley of life and end up feeling that we are not enough, or perhaps that we are too much.

And we carry that feeling of “not enoughness”, or even “too muchness” into our teens, 20s, 30s and beyond. Trying to make sure that we “do” enough so that we are recognized for being valuable, being significant … that need for us to belong!

But I Have to remember that it is a feeling. And that feeling is based on my story, my interpretation. And that story is based on previous experience. And although I can’t change the experience, I can most certainly change my story – any time I want!

Like the swans.

They don’t judge. They encorage.

They don’t bully, they belong.

They don’t fight, they love.

Life is a collaboration. It’s team work.

We can’t do it alone.

Change your thoughts – Change your life.

I wonder what story would have come if I let my thoughts dwell on the ranger?

Therapist (RTT), Integrative Health & Empowerment Coach,
Certified Hypnotherapist

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