hello 'paranoid-type thoughts'*
Scary thoughts can sometimes be contagious.
I reckon this is why performing musicians don't reveal the depth of their struggle with difficult thoughts, feelings and sensations. Talking about them seems to make them more real and tangible, gives the thoughts more power and energy. Listening to someone talking about their deepest fears can also make them seem more real in my listener's head, and once they are there, you cannot un-think them and pretend you never thought them.
Such is my life at the moment - combining being a musician, with listening to musicians most intimate and terrifying thoughts as a counsellor.
This came to the fore yesterday as I had talked to a number of musicians about my work as a counsellor, and they begin to tell me what it is like for them. I am truly grateful for this privilege.
But all of a sudden, after not thinking 'paranoid-type thoughts'* for years, all of a sudden, there they were, whispering inside my head. I didn't invite them, I didn't deliberately choose to think them, I did not ask for the physical manifestation of them - mild panic feelings, disorientated, shaking, lack of concentration - but that was there also..
Luckily, I have been around this mental roundabout before. Thousands of times.
I said to myself, 'Thank you mind. Ah., here are some 'paranoid' thoughts. Welcome' but still they lingered.
But I dropped the struggle and accepted they were there.
I 'made room' for them, breathed into, and around them.
And did the best I could under the circumstances. In the presence of them.
*'paranoid' is a generally a clinical term for someone who is mentally ill who believes someone is out to harm them. I deliberately use the term 'paranoid-type thoughts'