I haven’t been able to rest
my mind for weeks,
said the man
I keep thinking
about a problem
Thoughts occupy my brain constantly
They’re torturing me
I’m trapped
in the habit
of thinking about the problem,
lost in memories
of the past
and fantasies
about how the problem might be resolved
in the future

There is a way
to regain control of your mind,
said his friend
Today is Thursday
Stop thinking about the problem
until next Thursday
And every time you realize
that you are thinking about this problem,
ask yourself what day it is,
and if it is not yet Thursday,
stop giving energy to those thoughts,
don’t entertain them
Then when it is Thursday again,
feel free to think about the problem

I’ll give it a try
Thank you

And so his friend left
and the man began to think
about the problem

♫ ♫ ♫

 I’m thinking about the problem,
the man realized,
and so quickly he stopped
giving it his attention

A minute or two passed
and then he began thinking
about the problem again

And so it continued
throughout the day
and into the night:
The man would think about the problem for a while,
eventually realize what he was doing
and then stop thinking
for a while

♫ ♫ ♫

Friday came and went,
Saturday too,
and with each passing day
the number of thoughts
related to the problem
had become so few
and far between
that they commanded little attention

 Finally it was Thursday again
and the man was feeling well and rested
Wednesday had passed
with barely a thought
about the problem
passing through his mind

He considered giving some thought to it,
but then decided there was no need
and to wait
until the following Thursday
before thinking about it again

♫ ♫ ♫