Your brain is the most magnificent thing you will ever own, and you do own it! You can be in control of it every conscious moment, with the aid of a few simple tips. To start with let’s talk about why we are creatures of habit.
Basically, our brains adopt efficient strategies for thinking about what the events in our lives mean. Ever noticed how you do so many things in set ways? How you eat, get dressed, shower, answer phone calls and talk to your partner/parents/kids in an almost automatic way?
Also notice how once you’ve had an interaction with someone you have ‘summed them up.’ In no time at all, you made your opinion up about them, and then brought that opinion with you into the future.
Why do we create these shortcuts?
To save mental energy—our brain is hardwired for laziness based on our survival instincts. Bottom line, your brain wants you to create habits, automatic responses and repetitious behaviors so you can have energy available in case you need to run or fight for your life. Luckily for many of us in the modern world, our lives aren’t threatened on a daily basis.
What does this mean?
It means we can take control back of our brain. We can think fresh in every moment. We can be much more creative with responding to the current information available to us in the moment. We can make our minds up about something or someone based on what is “real data” in this very moment; instead of letting our past views, impressions, decisions and habits guide our behavior.
But let’s also be clear on one thing: You have thousands of awesome habits and patterns and repetitious behaviors that lead to awesome outcomes. Keep them; allow your brain to repeat those patterns when appropriate.
What I’m suggesting is to be in the moment, every moment and make fresh choices that will lead to the best result for you and anyone else you are interacting with. If your old habits lead to mediocre results, choose a different thought, emotional response, behavior or words that will create a fabulous outcome for all.
So how do you create new habits in old or familiar situations? Easy!
- Pause. You need to do this to be able to be in the moment.
- Ask yourself: Is what I am about to say or do leading to fabulous outcomes for all involved?
- Take action. Think thoughts, speak words and choose behaviors that will lead to getting awesome results. The great thing here is you have unlimited possibilities available to you.
An important thing to be aware of when creating news ways of thinking is that you need to be consistent. You learned all of your current habits through repetition. Therefore, learning any new behavior will also require repetition.
So, think about this:
‘What is possible for me in every area of my life if I choose to be present in each and every moment, leaving the past in the past and creating fresh?’
Take a moment to write your answers down and then take action to live the beautiful life you know is possible!
Christine McKee, a registered psychologist, is director of BE Institute, a psychology consulting and training organization in Brisbane, Australia. She uses a combination of eastern philosophy and modern psychological techniques with her clients in the corporate, private practice, mining, government and not-for-profit arenas. Chris is dedicated to empowering individuals to reconnect with their inner wisdom and in doing so, return to wholeness. Christine is the published author of BE by Design: How I BE Is Up to Me.
Editor: James Carpenter
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