Trains of Thought

Susan Brumbaugh
4 min readFeb 5, 2021

Here’s a helpful metaphor to deal with thoughts that just won’t quit.

Photo by Sam Farallon on Unsplash

If you’re looking for a strategy to try when thoughts swirl or your mind won’t stop, a metaphor-based meditation might be useful. This practice comes from Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, which is the type of counseling I use with many of my clients, and it can be helpful in learning to observe and then let go of thoughts. Today’s meditation uses a train metaphor to work with thoughts that can sometimes carry us away, and it’s difficult to think of anything else or focus on anything. I hope that you’ll find this metaphor useful, and once you practice it you’ll be able to use it anytime.

I’m a licensed mental health counselor who enjoys sharing mindful meditations and information about mindfulness. Below is a transcript of a meditation I led on this topic, and at the end of the article, you’ll find a link to the meditation video. Give it a try and see what you notice.

Meditation Transcript

As we enter into this time, we know that we’re going to be focusing on thoughts. Even so, the thoughts of the moment can interfere a little bit with even getting started.

So take a moment to acknowledge that thoughts are there, and they will continue to swirl. But with a few deep breaths and whatever movements would feel comfortable, begin to…



Susan Brumbaugh

Susan Brumbaugh is a criminal justice researcher who telecommutes, a licensed counselor, a mindfulness meditation practitioner, and a perpetual learner.