How to Stop Thinking
How to stop thinking so much, or altogether. Your level of productivity should be fueled by your intelligence, not stagnated by it. It's important to occasionally detach yourself from your thoughts, and even your emotions for that matter. But for the sake of this article, we'll direct our attention to eliminating the constant mind chatter we often experience.
It's a fact that thinking too much can be harmful - completely detrimental at times. The body, which can be viewed as a manifestation of our mind, is somewhat of a prison if constantly succombed to our own egos. For consciousness (i.e. complete clarity and understanding of the bigger picture right down to the microscopic details of life) to reign, you need to give your mind a break occasionally... often getting tough with yourself in order to do so.
The average person perceives the ability to think as a good thing, but this is only true if you can think clearly. In all probability, when you're thinking purely with your mind, results will most likely be lackluster. So, what other types of thinking exist within the individual? Well, you can think with your heart, which oddly enough is in part made up of brain matter. And beyond that, you can tap into spiritual intelligence for thinking optimally.
Through meditation, an unlimited source of cosmic energy can potentially flow through you... enabling you to receive answers to your most difficult questions, improving your problem-solving abilities exponentially. Concentration, which can be viewed as the opposite of meditation (a form of silencing the mind, or in other words, to not think at all), is thinking with the analytical, critical, logical mind. Meditation, on the other hand, allows a person to achieve heightened intuition - you know, that inner voice that comes from deep within (the one you know speaks the truth, however difficult it is to follow).
A healthy amount of daily concentration and meditation are important to a person's well-being, and in some cases, survival. As a side note, it's important to keep in mind that meditative states can be achieved by simply doing what you love (for me personally, it's training at the gym), and not solely by means of more traditional methods (like sitting under a tree or in a quiet, candle-lit room with your legs crossed, palms up, etc).
Yes, we do need to concentrate (i.e. to think) regularly with that "bad" part of ourselves to experience balance, or better yet, harmony. The key, however, is to allow yourself to regenerate, meaning to pull in energy, regularly as well; I'm now referring to meditation, which as I already mentioned, can be accomplished in various ways. When I train at the gym (and as methodical as my workouts may seem), my level of concentration is actually very low, and meditation levels, therefore, are very high. This is why I often genuinely feel as though I "need" to work out; It's because I do in order to function properly.
Taking things one step further, this idea of balancing, or crossing rather, concentration and meditation for concise, focused thinking can equate to the many other opposites that exist in our reality; Female and male, positive and negative magnetic forces, good and evil, physical and spiritual. There's so much that can be said on the subject, but in sum... certain aspects of the two are necessary for your advancement, most powerfully at the point in which they meet.
To dissolve ignorance (along with deception and all other illusory entities), we need to begin accepting that everything is on one side or the other of the exact same coin. This coin is us, and happiness can only be achieved through the acceptance of both sides. Then, and only then, will our thinking shift from controlling us to empowering us to help subside the suffering within ourselves, and hopefully, ultimately, the suffering of others.
Getting back to the specific subject for this article, and your question on how to stop thinking, there exist ways of shifting slightly towards the meditative side (which is the one most people have trouble with, and in isolated cases, is near-dormant). Although, metaphorically-speaking, over-concentration boxes us into a corner, leading us towards a place of limited thinking AND acting, we do have some control over this phenomenon at all times. And if we can control it, we can tame it.
When in a grounded state, you can concentrate on breathing, the number one catalyst contributing to your peace of mind. It's not that breathing is the best thing for it, but that it usually comes first in the meditative process. You can, at any given moment, start to breathe slowly, inhaling deeply, and exhaling preferably through a pursed lip. Consciously focusing on this way of breathing can actually help improve your overall health (almost instantly) and relieve any stress you're currently under; It's the meeting point we were talking about earlier.
You also have the ability to choose where to stand, right now. If you're stuck in an environment that is consistently uninspiring and unchallenging (for many, this seems to be their place of work), change! Don't just move onto something else, temporarily delaying your current struggles; Select where you truly want to be in this instant. Following this path, nothing will ever be perfect, but your experiences will provide enough of what you need to move forward successfully. Your thoughts won't have as much influence over you, either.