One of the symptoms of Bipolar Disorder is that the decision-making element of our brain’s frontal lobe is sometimes bypassed so that those of us with this condition believe our first thought and act on impulse. Which often ends badly.
Another repeated personal experience that I had prior to getting into recovery was the frequent occurrence of unwanted, torturous, intrusive thoughts that were often self-critical and shame-based. I believed them and suffered immensely.
As I have progressed in recovery, I have become more able to be aware of my thoughts and pause and consider them before believing them or acting on them-through the use of medication, prayer, self-awareness, CBT, AA, exercise, therapy, service, and talking my thoughts through with others.
In that sense, I have learned to observe my thoughts.
As we say in AA, “80% of what goes on in my head is for entertainment purposes only.”