5/09/2015

Your happiness depends entirely on your thinking

Too many inputs
The world is not what the world seems to be. It is much more and we only see, feel and sense a small piece of it. There are million bits of information hitting us every second and we notice only a tiny part of it. Do you trust me? Try these exercises to understand it a bit more.

It's called selective attention. Some call it habits, others named it rituals and another sort of psychologists explain this fenomena by awareness and focus. Basically what we think the most, we see in the environment around the most. You for sure know people who are often upset no matter what happens as well as you know happy people who feel amused even when situation goes wrong. How is that possible when the circumstances are the same for both?

See the following video to get the idea:


Did you notice the monkey? If not, don't worry. It's what I wanted to prove. You focused so much to other things that you missed the obvious. You can try another exercise described by Tony Robbins at 2:05 of the following video:



I know this great demonstration that we see what we focus on from Win Wenger's The Einstein Factor. It goes like this. Find a place with many colors - children playground, garden or a store and try to notice all the object of one color around you - let's say it would be red. Then close your eyes and try to remember as many of these objects as possible. Then without opening your eyes try to remember some objects of the different color on which you did not focus, be it green, blue, black or any other. You will see that you remember very few of them. Once you open your eyes again, you will though see plenty of them almost instantly.
"We don't see things as they are, we see them as we are."
Our mind searches for what we are used to search for. When you discover a new brand or a product you start to see it very often. If you plan to move to a new neighborhood you will notice many more articles about the area, it will appear in advertisements and in TV. 
But why am I talking about all of this? Because it mean, that if we don't like our current life or if we want to change some part of it, the work is not done outside of us, we first need to change our internal state and our mindset. Most of the time we comprehend the world unconsciously, our reality being formed by our habits. But we have the power to change it via conscious work and deliberately change our interpretation of the reality by focused awareness. So how do we do it:

  1. Acknowledge the condition or state you don't like - you don't need to judge whether it is good or bad
  2. Now focus on these situations, remind yourself of it often and appreciate yourself every time you notice.
  3. Build a new habit by acting, visualizing or by roleplaying it alone or with friends and those who have courage can try the new behavior in the real life situations - sooner or later you will have to do it real anyway if you want to change.
And that's this simple. Find out, acknowledge and change by focus, attention, playful visualization and real action. It works every time. If you struggle to build a new behavior, there is probably some block in your mind, an old fear or stuck emotion. There are many techniques to release these energies but the best news is that once you set your awareness to solving this problem you always find a way to move forward. You will just usually need to take the fearful step to leave your comfort zone though. 

Your brain acts as a reality filter or so called 'mind-glasses'. There are other implication out of it - like the truth is relative and what others think about us is not about us but about their own version of reality but we will discuss that in another article. Before I leave you watch this beautiful sketch video: 


By the way, was your awareness influenced by the fact I said the video is nice or even the fact that it is here on this page? Yeah, your experience might have been different if you have found it in different circumstances.
"Our capacity to process information is limited in terms of capacity, and our selection of information to process takes place early in the perceptual process. In order to do this, we utilize a filter to determine which information to attend to."

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