Everyone has a deep burning desire to be something, to accomplish something, to feel something.
Often , if we listen, we catch ourselves quietly saying, I wish I could. I wish this was different.
It’s human nature to want something better for our lives.
And there’s truly nothing stopping us right?
Right. In this present moment. This unique, never to ever happen again moment, everything we want IS possible.
So what stops us?
FEAR. Past experiences. Old childhood programming reminding us of our limitations, our selfish desires, we were probably constantly reminded we couldn’t or shouldn’t have.
Our wonderful exceedingly capable intelligent brains are at fault here too.
The brain likes be efficient. It doesn’t like to use a lot of energy learning a new pathway.
It is said that by the time we’re 35 years old, our brains ‘think’ it has enough information gathered to know, predict and execute anything we need to do in life.
That is, most of our conscious thinking does not need to be involved anymore to get things done.
So who’s running the show? Our SUBCONSCIOUS minds.
Our subconscious mind needs NO input from our conscious minds to do things, which is why we often space out when we drive, when we eat, get dressed, talk on the phone and cook dinner etc etc.
We have run that circuit for so long now, it’s automatic.
So what does this have to do with our fears and not getting what we want?
The moment we step outside our comfort zone and peer into the unknown, our brains send an alert…be it an uncomfortable feeling and a barrage of negative self talk…you can’t do this! It feels uncomfortable. Stop, we should just keep doing the same. etc etc.
So strong is this discomfort, we revert back to the regular, the old tried and true and affirm…SEE it’s too hard. It can’t be done!
So instead of pushing passed it, we get to the first post of discomfort and remind ourselves, we can’t do it.
BUT if you recognise this it’s just the brain, not wanting to exert any more energy and effort than it needs to, we can bit by bit, learn to push past the discomfort and do it anyway.
It’s NOT that we can’t, we’re just being run by an effortless circuit and the brain has NO prior reference for this NEW thing.
Because the brain is adaptable, malleable, it WILL learn this new path and slowly but surely the feelings of discomfort will subside and before you know it, you will be doing something that only 3, 6 or 12 months ago you thought you’d NEVER do.
Hebbs Law, says, neurons that fire apart stay apart.
Which means, the less you give to one thing (old habit), the more you weaken the circuit and the brain will eventually discard it.
So step into the unknown, into the fear.
Every moment is new, unventured, unexplored, despite what our brains try to tell us.
We can do it.
As they say, Feel the fear and do it anyway.
Beck is an author, speaker of lived trauma experience and recovery and a bit of a neuroscience geek!
My memoir, Chasing Normal is available now. www.beckthompson.com.au
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