2021 November 30: Life reimagined for Baby Boomers and everyone.

Dec 14, 2021

Hi. This is Jim Cranston from 7EveryMinute and 7EveryMinute.com, a podcast and website by, for, and about Baby Boomers. So last week we talked about a tip that I described to make potentially uncomfortable situations is a little bit more, a little bit less stressful and a little bit less intimidating. So this week we're going to review that quickly and then go on and give some more background on what it is that we can do to help ourselves, kind of help our minds automatically help us reach our goals. First. I hope everyone had a happy Thanksgiving, both here in the US and elsewhere everywhere. Like I said, it's one of the holidays we love to share with everybody. Like I mentioned last week, Thanksgiving to me, should be all about being thankful for the good in our lives, and hopefully for hanging out with friends and family or doing whatever brings you joy and comfort. So I hope everyone had a nice Thanksgiving. So a quick recap from last week's tip on managing stressful difficult situations. 


Recall that we spoke about perceptions and how they affect our reactions to a situation.  And as a review from Dr. Shannon Nervine's neuro coaching course: the very basic building blocks of perception and how we perceive the world around us, our situation and stimulus, those are the things that happen either to us or around us or something that is within our sphere of attention that our mind pays attention to a little bit. And then that results in a thought. And that is our brain at some level, acknowledging the event, whether that event is a sound, a light flashes somewhere, you hear some music, you smell something, whatever it is, there's some outside stimulus, and that causes our brain to form this thought. So when that thought happens, then something happens after that. You smell something yummy. Then you see yummy food, maybe you have something nice to eat. 


And so that thought when it keeps being repeated over and over again. And when the same sort of outcome happens, then that turns into a belief. And what belief is basically our subconscious automates that whole thought action process. So we smell something that we think might result in yummy food. And our belief is oh! We should go see who's baking something or who's making some delicious food. We didn't actually have to sit down and analyze and say, what is that smell like that smells like bread and gravy. And so probably somebody making the stew that I like. None of that happened explicitly. It gets automated into a belief, which is just again, just an automatic interpretation by our brain of some thought resulting from some stimulus or situation. So that's it. In a nutshell. 


We also covered how there are techniques to reprogram our brain and to reduce the stress and in some sort of situation that we are in.  And I did make up a little handout. It was a little late to get posted, didn’t make it up for Thanksgiving. But if you want ,basically, all they ask is if you put down your email address and then that will take you to a page where you can download this handout. And that's the one we covered last week, which goes through the process we just described of ways to kind of automate that and practice envisioning some nice outcome or some outcome that we desire, and using that to get our brain to think into a larger situation, and that automatically generally reduces the stress of the situation, helps us move past it and envision the good in a situation. That handout can be found there. It's just the web address for the website. Seven every minute. Com/choosehappiness. So like I said, the little handout goes through, and the overview again is to imagine something nice. It can be anything, just something that you really want to focus on, be something nice that happened in your life, something nice you did for somebody else, and then you felt how special they felt and something that brings you joy or brings you closer to your goals. 


And then, as I mentioned, you really want to think intensely about that, really envision it intensely and completely. It can be briefly. But you want to really think about the whole situation. And so all the thoughts and smells that go with the things you might see, the things other people might say to you. You really want to envision the whole thing, the sounds that you hear if you're in the Woods listening to a Brook, looking at the Brook, smelling the coolness of the Brook, or feeling the coolness of the brook, smelling the freshness of the water, and really envisioned the whole thing briefly. And the point of that, the goal of that, is to get your mind to remember that it is in control of your perceptions and to remember that you are able to create a joyous moment or to reframe the situation that you're in. And that's really important because a lot of times mentioned briefly on the handout, we tend to feel that we're kind of caught up in being the results of a situation that we don't have any control over it. 


And that's not really the case. Many times we have a lot of control over a situation and if not over the situation directly, certainly our reaction to the situation. And so this is just a technique to help your brain remember that. And so when it's in a stressful situation or challenging situation, a new situation just makes you unsure what to do. It helps to remember that you're actually in control of how you act. And so now that means if you want to act calmly, you can just convince yourself that, yes, I can act calmly because I'm speaking for the first time to hold auditorium and full of people who I don't know doesn't mean that I have to be nervous. That's certainly one option, but the other option is to just focus on a few people and talk to them and then go on and actually make eye contact with them and have a conversation with them. And by doing that, have a conversation with everybody in the auditorium. So there's lots of things we can do to control that situation.  And we also cover that the intensity part and truly immersing yourself in that vision is very important. 


And finally, the new material for tonight now is going through the reasoning behind why that envisioning an immersion, complete immersion, what the technique is behind that and why it's so important and what we're trying to accomplish by doing that. And so if you're just trying to imagine something nice, certainly that's a fun thing to do. It's kind of like, oh, boy, I think I'm having a nice meal and going for a walk by the river or whatever. It's enjoyable, but it's probably not life changing. However, what is life changing is getting our brains to envision a new future and specifically a future which is aligned with our goals and with our desires. To get our brain to believe that it's already happening or even better that it has already happened. Then our brain will naturally learn to pull us towards doing things and to think in a manner that makes our successes and realizing our goals much more likely. 


Again, we're not trying to just imagine something. What we're trying to do is create a situation where our brain sees it as a reality, because if you think about it, a lot of our perception forms our realities. If it's raining outside, we have the choice to say, Well, now there's nothing I can do. Or Now is a good time to go out, throw on our rain gear,and take the dog for a walk, so he gets completely soaked and I don't have to wash him in the shower. The only thing that changed there is our perception of the situation. We have a lot of control over our lives that way. So to explain it in another way, when we envision something positive, especially if it involves other people and we truly start to completely envision it, then it becomes our future reality. 


It really does happen that way. We're going to go through some exercises, probably not this week just because of time, but we're going to go through some exercises and what you'll see if you do them and really practice them or set motivating phrases for you to see and really start to envision them, is pretty soon, within a couple of weeks, that becomes your natural train of thought. It's like any time you change a habit, if your habit is getting right up out of bed instead of lounging around in bed for 20 minutes, hitting the snooze alarm four times. If you just get up and start to envision things, envision all the things you can do with those extra 20 minutes, and how probably you probably always wanted to do this, but you just never got around to doing it and start talking to your brain and creating a situation where this becomes a natural event for you. After a few weeks, what you will find is all of a sudden, that is an actual course of action for you. You start to think back to the old days when you couldn't get yourself out of bed, and it's kind of like, wow, that doesn't even seem like me anymore. The reality is, it's not you anymore. You created a new you, and you can do that on many levels. So if every time you envision doing something nice for someone and you fill out that vision with all the sensory inputs, you really get in an actual world, seeing other people smile at you, perhaps smelling nice food. Like I said, if you're having a meal together, hearing the sounds and pleasant conversation, all these cues and hints, they make that vision seem much more real to your brain. 


Your brain will begin to accept that as the expected outcome in a situation, a pleasant outcome. So something that your brain wants. So now your brain, in your subconscious, is no longer scared of an uncertain future because like I said, let's say you're going to have to speak to a group of people at your club or at your Church, whatever. If it's not something you normally do, then it's a new and unfamiliar situation. There's a whole part of your subconscious that works very hard to keep you out of unfamiliar situations because you know how to do in a familiar situation. So when you enter a familiar situation, your brain, your body, everything is very comfortable. You walk into the kitchen, you see your significant other there you say, Good morning. How are you? There's nothing odd about it, and you're very comfortable in that situation. But now you have a bunch of friends over for the holidays. You walk into the kitchen, there's a whole bunch of people there talking or making food and using your dishes and what you don't expect or whatever. Now you just naturally get tense because it's a different situation. 


So all you're doing is training your brain how to handle this new and different situation in advance. Now it's a comfortable thing, and your brain knows what to do because you've gone through it again and again and again. I just want to really emphasize this isn't just imagining something or wishing for something to come true. It's really very different. This is envisioning an outcome. That's true. But it's really working through all the situations, figuring out the desired outcomes and the possible outcomes. Thinking back about the steps you took to reach your envisioned goal, and that's a very important thing so if you are going to give a speech to somebody, one way to do it, that's very effective is to envision having given the speech and how the people came up afterwards and said, that was a great speech. Jim, I learned a couple of things from you that was really excellent, and all the things that go along with that are positive. 


If you think, well, what happens if the PA system stops working and you can work through how that works. So now you're not scared of all these things that might happen because you and your brain have gone through how it could happen and worked around all the problems that might arise. All that planning, information, planning and information now becomes the basis of how your brain will tend to guide you. Since that was all focused towards reaching your goals, your brain will naturally walk you through and guide you towards reaching your goals. One of the neat things that comes out of that, like I said, even if there are disappointments or challenges or setbacks along the way, because your brain is now on board with reaching your goals, the setbacks will truly be just a learning experience rather than some demotivating defeat. That happens because when your brain has a tangible goal, let's just take something tangible and say, think of the store, going to the store to get fresh donuts or whatever it is that you find fun to do. If you're doing that when an obstacle arises is not that you just say, I'll forget it. I'm not going to get doughnuts. Maybe sometimes you do that. But in general, not if you're planning to go eat one way or the other, you're going to find out you're going to come up with a way to go eat. 


That's because your brain will come up with a solution to get around the challenge because it knows there's a reward at the end. This is reward waiting, and because your brain already knows that success is almost certain to be attained, it will take the steps needed to guide you through and get you to reaching that ultimate goal. All we're doing now is training your brain to think in terms of success for our goals and the goals that are important to us. So even though they might be a little scary or they require doing something new, we're teaching our brain how to actually move forward, overcome the obstacles and reach what we want to do. 


So looking at it another way when we envision a new goal, if it's a bit scary, if it's all new to us, well, think of something like trying to speak a new language, start a new career, change our relationship, whatever it is, anything new. Our subconscious is programmed to keep us safe and to go back to what we were doing before because it's familiar. Now, what if we could take some of those limiting beliefs, all those things we learned to keep us safe and instead replace them with being confident that we can reach our new goal easily because it's what we expect to happen, that indeed, that we've done it before. 


That's why we're trying to get our brain to envision a future, the future that we want to reach, because much like breathing, I think this is a really good analogy I just heard recently when you exhale all the old breath out, you let it all out. What you're doing is making space in your lungs and your body to bring in that fresh new breath so your body can thrive. You get everything you need to live with all the oxygen and all the air coming into you. Similarly, when you let go of all your pre-programmed limiting beliefs and you have all the space in your mind now, not in your lungs, to bring in new thoughts and goals into your life, and to train your brain to accept them just as readily as we used to accept all your limiting beliefs. 


I know there's a lot of information we discovered tonight, and we're probably going to go through and have a couple more sessions on this. Maybe I'll do a little mini signup, of course, and we'll talk about the whole process over the next few weeks. But for now, the most important part to realize is that you have the ability to retrain your brain and to replace limiting beliefs and expected outcomes with new goals and new outcomes that you've envisioned and taught your brain how to work towards and automatically guide you to them. You'll find that once you do that, your brain will happily embrace those new goals, and it will find ways to help you succeed and reach your goals. 


So again, to briefly recap it's up to each one of us to create the nicest world that we can, starting with ourselves and our current life situation. With every input we receive, we have a thought, and most of those thoughts are handled by our subconscious.  They're filtered out and they shape our beliefs. However, the key to our happiness is realizing that we can control how those filters work, that we can envision a new outcome. We can envision a new goal, and our brain is only too happy to work along with us once we show it how things can work toward everyone's benefit on behalf and to come to a pleasant outcome. Then your brain is all about coming to pleasant outcomes. If you showed the path how that can happen, then it's more than happy to lead you through those and get you to a place of really where it's just contentment and happiness and joy and satisfaction are really much more commonplace. 


So that's really what we're trying to do. We're going a lot more into all that. Again, this is kind of the introductory part of the course that's currently in development. One Minute to Happiness and it's basically a way to self education and with some guided instruction to go through and teach your brain these methods. Teach yourself these methods and techniques to get yourself to automatically work towards your goal. So it's quite different than trying to do it just by sheer willpower, because sheer willpower only lasts a little bit of time. However, once you get your brain on board and your brain sees, oh, this is how we get to the goal. This is why we're doing it now. It's not willpowered. Now it's the new you and it just happens naturally. So more will be coming.


Like I said, that's it for the week. Thank you very much for stopping by. If you found something interesting or useful, please pass it along. If not, please drop me a comment as to what you'd like to hear. Have a great week. Thanks for visiting and remember to live the life you dream of because that's the path to true contentment. Love and encouragement to everyone, and see you next week at 7 Every Minute and 7EveryMinute.com.

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