Last Sunday I attended a 7-hour “Brain-A-Thon” hosted by John Assaraf. You may know him from the movie “The Secret”.
The event was promoting a product that John put together in order to help people “Raise the Financial Glass Ceiling”, using different strategies to “retrain the brain”.
I really love that term! It is perfect to describe the essence of what we need to do, in order to change the results we want to get in life.
If we want to change an outcome, we have to change the approach. Today, change is essential. Only those who are willing to learn, change and adapt have a chance to make an impact on others, to leave their mark. Charles Darwin got it right when he said:
It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change.
So now that we can agree that change is inevitable, how do we do it? How do we release hidden blockages?
We have to free the elephant!
Do you know how elephants are trained? When they are young, they are tied to a stick in the ground with a rope or a chain. The elephant learns that his ability to move is limited and that when he attempts to get out of this range, the rope or the chain is scratching his sensitive skin. So every time he wants to get away, his brain receives signals of time. Over time, the elephant is getting conditioned to stay where he is, even when there is no more chain or rope.
For most of us humans it is the same. We experience some form of conditioning through our parents, schools, churches, or other forms of community in our childhood and we continue to believe them as being true as adults, even though the conditions might have totally changed. So as kids, our brain gets trained in a certain way.
Unfortunately for some people – alright, let´s be honest: for most people! – that leads to neural dissonance between the left and the right, the front and the back of the brain. ….Okay, in plain English, please.
We get an impulse that we would like to drive a new car, buy a nicer, bigger house, earn more money. Our frontal cortex, a part in the front of our brain, compares this input to our programming, which is stored with our memories in the back of the brain. If there is some conditioning in the form of “you can´t have that”, “you don´t deserve this”, “can´t afford it”, “not good enough”, “too hard”, “too old” or anything that does not match the image, the frontal cortex screams “ALARM!” and pushes the stress-button.
As a result, emotions of potential failure are released and the brain shuts down. (Okay, this is a really basic and shortened version, but essentially that´s how it works)
How do we get out of that cycle?
The first step of retraining your brain:
Unconditionally accept where you are right now.
Why is that important?
When we come from a place of anxiety or fearful expectations, we get tense and our brain shuts down. If we practise acceptance, however, we create a place where change can happen quickly.
This doesn´t mean we have to be okay with the current result nor is it giving in. Rather, like surrendering does not mean to give up but to allow, it means coming from a state of accepting with awareness.
Practising awareness with acceptance is a great technique to calm down. It´s a short-cut to relaxation. And a relaxed state is the only state where change can happen.
In order to retrain our unconscious brain, to initiate change, we must practise acceptance.
Second step of retraining your brain:
(Learning and practising how to) Let Go
Influenced by our parents and peers, but today more than ever by the media and advertising, which tells us that we need just this item or that gadget or these products in order to be happy, we are getting conditioned that we need more stuff in order to be happy (as mentioned above).
Continuing this mentality, we do not only hold on to physical stuff, but mental things as well, such as life lessons, tough times or stories of (putative) failure, or even just every day experiences.
Holding on to those old stories takes up a lot of energy and also creates a vicious cycle: as we give focus, attention and energy to these past experiences, we re-inforce them more and more until in the end all energy is getting used up in memorising and visualising the past. Due to the vibrations and signals we send out, we get even more of the same experiences.
Letting go seems a very hard task, especially when someone is identifying themselves with their old stories. Here are two ideas that will help the process of letting go:
1. Pay attention to your breathing.
Yes, sounds very simple and in fact, it really is. Focus on our breathe is always – in absolute any situation – getting us back to being more calm and relaxed. A good place for decision making!
How to do it:
Take a deep breathe in, allow your belly to come out. Hold your breathe at the top of the inhale, then exhale and say your own name to yourself. Do this a few times
2. Do something you love.
When we make and take the time to do something we love, we send signals to our brain to relax. As we know from above, a relaxed state is essential to facilitate change.
How to do it:
We enter a state of relaxed bliss when we connect with nature or our body through gardening, walking, gentle exercise, or when we spend joyful moments with friends or our partner.
3. Practise Self-Hypnosis
Self-Hypnosis allows us to step back from the thought autobahn and become the observer. When we observe, we can more easily become aware of our thoughts. That way we can uncover the rocks and weeds, take them out and plant some more useful seeds.
How to do it:
Self-Hypnosis can be performed as meditation, visualisation or fantasy journeys. The intention with all three is to focus the mind on wanted emotions and experiences, which we would love to attract.
As we accept and let go, our brain patterns stop firing and releasing stress signals. That lowers the threshold and allows us to relax.
Acceptance (with awareness) doesn´t take energy from the brain, allowing more room for its re-training. It does not come overnight, but needs to be practised daily, ideally over 6-8 weeks minimum. Initially the brain gets confused and wants to go back or stay in the comfort zone of the old pattern (around the 3-week-mark).
Continuing with your new habits and choices will strengthen the new neuro-pathways you started to build, leading to new thought patterns, which in turn will initiate different actions, more resourceful behaviours and as a long-term result, more success.
John´s product is a huge program that aims to support people “Raise The Financial Glass Ceiling And Win The Money Game”. It comes with many extras and is, I´m pretty sure, a very professional production. The special offer was just short of $1000 and there were many testimonials that it was easily worth this and more.
However, if you don´t have that amount available to invest, you might like to hear that there are less expensive options available.
One of them is The Silva Life System – one of the most transformative, scientifically proven & time tested self-empowerment programs in the world. It brings you a unique combination of Alpha and Theta level exercises, creative visualizations, habit control and positive programming methods. Since 1966, the Silva Method has helped 6 million people in 110 countries to spark profound and lasting positive change in their careers, finances, health, emotional wellbeing and relationships.
It definitely made a difference in my life.
I have ordered and listen to some of the Hypnosis resources myself and I find them very valuable, which is why I like to introduce you to some of them: