It’s time to get serious.
If I really want to live a life I love, do what only I was created to do, flourish in my relationships, and love every day no matter what happens, I need to physically rewire my brain to change the way I perceive, react, and experience the world.
My husband challenged me to a 40-day challenge of no complaining, and I accepted.
Want to join us?
Why it Works: What is Mindfulness
Every thought you think forms a physical structure and neural pathway in your brain that controls your default way of thinking. If you have been thinking a certain way over and over- those are the pathways you have in your brain so that is how you are automatically going to think because that is what is there. It takes 63 days to break down pathways and replace them. It also takes that long to get your new way of thinking into your subconscious mind so it becomes how you automatically think and see the world. Welcome to freedom. You can intentionally choose how you want to wire your brain, which controls how you perceive, feel, and experience life. You can wire out mindsets and reactions that are not serving you (worry, fear, comparison), and wire in ones that do(confident, peaceful, happy), so it becomes who you naturally are without trying.
Reticular Activating System 101
Your Reticular Activating System is a part of your brain that filters all of the information coming at you. It only takes in what you have deemed most important by your habitual mental setup.
I’m talking about your attention, what you are focusing on. It sounds cliche, but it’s not just a nice thought anymore. It’s a scientific fact that what you focus on, you get more of and draw to you.
Have you ever seen those mind game shows? The ones where you have a guy doing some kind of trick with cards or money…you are watching that and then at the end of the video, he is in a completely different outfit. Like, outrageously different – and you don’t even notice until he points out at the end he is in completely different clothes! Even though it was right in front of you and it was blatantly obvious, you didn’t notice it because you were not focusing or looking for it! It’s so wild, it amazes me every time.
This is what is happening in our lives! When we are focusing on what we don’t like about ourselves, our lives, others, etc, our brain is literally blinded to the good, the solutions, the opportunities, and the wisdom that we need.
When we stop and focus on God and what good is already around, then we begin to see things we were blinded to before. We begin to see the miracles, possibilities, solutions, and wisdom we need that are in front of us.
Now, we are also suffering from the flip side of this truth. Focus on lack – you will see more lack. Focus on symptoms, you will see more symptoms. Focus on what you don’t like about your spouse or kids or work or life. . . and you will see more reasons that support what you are focusing on.
That’s just the plan of the enemy isn’t it? Trying to get you to focus on what is ‘wrong’ to physically block your ability to notice what is right.
All that matters is your ability to put your attention where you want, when you want, for how long you want.
What you appreciate, appreciates. What you focus on is what you are going to see more of.
Perception is Reality. I had a teacher in high school always tell that to me and I never really understood what that meant, until now, and wow is it scary true. The world occurs to you in the way you believe it to be, and your experiences are always consistent with your assumptions. So what are your assumptions? The problems in life are not the problem- your perception of them is the problem. It’s not the event that determines how you feel, it’s the meaning that you associate to the event. That meaning is something you create and communicate to yourself. All upsets come down to the meaning you are associating with something.
Next time you are upset, don’t look at the circumstance that made you upset, look at what you ‘thought’ it meant for you. That’s important because you can change the meaning you give something, which changes the problem, because your world will become what you believe it to be. We have to purposefully challenge our perceptions and what we think things mean to change our reality and to strip away all of the programs and false beliefs that are causing us to see it in that way in the first place. It’s like stepping out of the matrix and taking off your blinders. We have to be able to stop become aware of the meaning we are giving something and how we are perceiving it to change what’s actually happening.
Any physical problem myself or my clients have, I first examine daily thoughts, emotions, and perceptions, because it’s those areas that are controlling the systems of the body. The physical body is rarely the problem, it’s just the one giving you the symptoms telling you something is blocking the ability of the immune, hormonal, and digestive system to work properly. They are telling you something needs to change to switch those systems back on, and the master control of that switch is your mind.
How you are perceiving your life is controlling your health, relationships, and opportunities.
If I know my thoughts, emotions, perceptions, and actions are controlling my health, relationships, and life purpose, then I need to be hyper-aware of them for a period of time followed by intentionally choosing ones I know will create the life I want.
Heres what I am going to do:
- 40 Days of No Complaining
- Rules: You Can Express How You Feel. . . . However. . .
- Don’t gossip or blame anyone else
- Don’t become a victim – nothing will change, why me, I hate how, I have no control. . .
- Follow it up with something you are grateful for and how you can create what you want
- I’m feeling ___ because ____ and the meaning I’m giving that/the story I am making up is ____ BUT I am grateful for____ and am going figure out how to___
- Rules: You Can Express How You Feel. . . . However. . .
- Board of Thankfulness, Values, Identity, Prayers/Dreams.
- Keeping these in front of you is what will cause you to think about them —> generate emotion —> creating change in all areas.
- A board we have hanging in the kitchen which we all see multiple times a day, divided into 4 sections:
- Thankfulness: What we are grateful for
- Our families core values/identity statements
- Prayers or Dreams we are co-creating with God
- Answered Prayers
- Gratitude before dinner
- Everyone goes around saying what they are grateful for that day
Express Emotions, But Don’t Be a Victim:
I am not going to pretend to be giddy 24/7 and act as though I don’t have a care in the world. That’s not helpful and will actually cause energetic imbalances in the body. If I have a bad day, I am going to say I had a bad day. I can be real, without falling into a story of being a victim, like nothing will change, why me, blaming someone else, I hate how, and I have no control. I will feel whatever comes up, decide the meaning I want to give the situation and how I am going to perceive it, and follow it up by something I am grateful for or know is possible/want to happen.
So express then follow up with something positive/a solution to your problem. Use this outline when an upset comes along:
I’m feeling ___ because ____ and the meaning I’m giving that/the story I am making up is ____ BUT I am grateful for____ and am going figure out how to___
Example: “I have no time to do what I wanted to do because the kids didn’t nap/just wanted to be held/were throwing tantrums all day, I can’t do this anymore, everything is behind, I feel so lonely, and I can’t do anything to take care of myself” <—- Victim (guilty of this one).
Instead, “I had I really hard day with the kids because of ____ the meaning I am giving/the story I am making up based on today is that every day will be like this and I will never get to do what I want to do, and I wish my life were more like ___. The truth is, I am grateful for our little family, that they are healthy, and this is just a season, and I am going to work on getting someone to help so everything can get done and I can do what I feel called to do.” <— Creating new realities through thoughts, emotions, and perceptions.
Great post Megan! Very thought provoking. I can’t wait to try it!
Wonderful article. I LOVE it, I am definitely starting that 40 day challenge today! And I am even challenging my sisters to join me.
That makes me SO happy to hear!!! It’s amazing what it will do!
I just found your website and am so grateful. I cannot stop reading. 🙂 Where have you been all my life….
Thank you, Megan!
Thank you SO much Kelly! I am grateful you are here!! xx
It was great to find your page. It was really helpful. Thanks and continue to open eyes. Be blessed.