One hundred billion neurons and 100 trillion connections make up the human brain. It's a really juicy world up there with a lot of room for movement.
Understanding the basic mechanics of the mind makes setting, sticking to and (drum roll) achieving your 2017 New Year's Resolutions very realistic. Let me explain...
In our every-day living, we absorb 2 million pieces of information per second. Processing every piece of data would overload us, so we cleverly implement a filtering system in our brain to consciously process just around 7 chunks of information at a time. The rest of the information is thrown straight into storage, otherwise known as our sub-conscious.
It's the filtering system that we each implement, as unique to us as our fingerprints, that gives our life direction.
Starting from conception and continuing through everyday living, each of our experiences are packaged up to create life as we know it. Whatever we feel is missing from our life, or that which we want more of, becomes what we seek to fulfill and it's this that our brains create filters to look for.
The filters sort everything that our senses take in, dismissing those things that don't seem helpful in fulfilling our goal (sending them straight to storage) and highlighting those things that are helpful.
Filters are the Google search engine in your brain showing you what it thinks you want to see.
For this reason, our automated Google search makes decisions on our behalf by the simple act of blocking 'unhelpful' data from our conscious perceptions. This dictates the decisions we make in life and therefore the results we experience as a consequence.
This is why you might sometimes struggle to achieve goals you've set. If you are not clear on your internal Google search topic, it's easy to be coerced by other people's achievements and think that you want what they've got. You may convince yourself that their goals are actually your goals and then try to achieve them.
Enter brain filters.
The goal you're aiming for is on the road to the right. Your filters, based on your internal search engine, have set the GPS telling you to turn left. This is where frustration is born for those who feel they've failed to reach their goals. If you're not achieving your goals, there's a good chance that they're not actually yours.
To move forward effectively, you have to know what's already programmed into your GPS.
There are two things essential for communicating with the programmer. The first is to dust off your filters, keeping them clean and current. That's to say, resolve emotional hang ups from your past.
Any memory which has an emotional charge when you think about it, positive or negative, is playing a role in your filtering system. This affects the way you perceive your current reality, the choices you make because of it and therefore your results.
In practical terms, a simple exercise is to write a list of all the benefits you've gained from a 'negative' event and, conversely, a list of all of the drawbacks from a 'positive' event. Repeat this process until you balance out your perceptions for each event, seeing it as just 'an event', appreciating that it actually has an equal amount of both benefits and drawbacks.
The second is to work out what your highest values are to understand what is programmed into your GPS. This is crucial to understanding what drives us, especially if we want to consciously make any changes within our world.
Then it's what you do with this information.
To be most effective with 2017 New Year's Resolutions, all of your goals should link into your highest values and feed that value. This is where you have the most chance of achieving your goals. If you can not see the links between your goals and your highest values, the GPS will take you to the values every time, even if it's away from your goals -- that's the way we're programmed.
There are options though. You can link your goals, mentally, so they appear to be on the way to achieving your highest values. Give the GPS a new route to take while still ensuring you arrive at your destination. That's where the magic is!
You can achieve those New Year's Resolutions after all. Hello 2017!
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