As I "Show Up, Sit Down, and Type" today, I am reminded of the thought of something better that often haunts me as I write. It is part of why it is so easy to be distracted from writing, so easy to judge oneself for any fault whatsoever, real or imagined.
I will often share with the students in my meditation classes that the mind lives in the realm of ideas and ideals, which is not always connected with the ground of right-here-now. The mind helps us in many ways, especially when we need to use logic to accomplish a task. However, it is not the whole story.
When you have the thought of something better, whether it be as mundane as an insight in rearranging or the life-changing consideration of what your life would be like with a different partner, see if you can recognize the most crucial truth of all:
It is just a thought.
It might be a wonderfully indulgent thought, or a thought that makes all sorts of sense. But that doesn't negate that it is a thought. And thoughts are just projections of the mind. And the mind is not the whole story.
Joan Tollifson beautifully demonstrates in her book, Bare-Bones Meditation, that "Thoughts are not facts," though they make great cases to persuade us to believe they are.
Next time you recognize a thought of something better, see if you can emphasize the thought part of it, and see if it changes your sense of the something better part.