It’s Painfully Cold… Or is it?

I had the most interesting experience the other day. Since this cold weather has been around, I have been painfully cold. As I drive my numerous carpools throughout the day and night, I fret about being so cold until the car warms up (sometimes I get all the way there and back before it even warms up).

Then on shabbos as I was walking home from a kiddush (the whole time thinking about how cold I am), I bumped into a good friend. We talked for a while as it snowed and then said goodbye. As I continued walking, I was reminded of how painfully cold I was.

That’s when it hit me. That certain kind of “wait a minute” feeling. Like there is something here to get curious about. How was it that for 10 minutes while I was talking to my friend, I didn’t even notice how cold I was? How is that possible? The weather didn’t change.

The truth is there were cold moments, less cold moments and no cold moments. What accounts for the change?

A shift in thought, not the weather. My “painfully cold” is a thought created experience. In the moments talking to my friend, I wasn’t thinking about cold. That’s the only thing that changed.

I realized if it was possible not to feel cold then, than it’s always possible. I am walking around miserable in this cold weather, but it’s only because I keep focusing on all my “cold thinking.”

Now don’t get me wrong. That doesn’t mean there isn’t a reality. The real feel temperature is below 0 degrees. It means, I am not experiencing reality. Rather, I experience my thinking about reality.

I’m excited to experiment with this for the rest of the winter.

Ride The Wave

By Aviva Barnett, MSW

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