In honor to the new Star Wars movie soon to be released, here’s an amazing reminder from one of the greatest Jedi masters, next to Yoda: The teacher of Anakin Skywalker himself, Master Qui Gon. (Who sure looks like the teacher of Batman).
Psychology researchers have now demonstrated scientifically that the human mind has a Negativity Bias (see my previous article). To recap, our mind has a bias (prejudice in favor of one thing) for the most negative things in life. If you recall, young Anakin focused all his mind on the negative things that happened to him and he became Darth Vader. Star Wars is the most successful film story of all time because it uses the model for the Hero’s Journey, with life lessons for every one of us on the journey. Each of us is on a Hero’s Journey and what we focus on determines if our life is mostly Light or Darkness. AND, I know this from PERSONAL experience and it’s what lead me on the path of becoming a life coach, or life guide, to pass on what I can like master Qui Gon.
There’s lots of ways we’ve heard of this lesson: the Law of Attraction, the truth that “what you focus on expands”, or simply the neuroscientific fact that your Reticular Activating System targets and acquires whatever it is repetitively shown as a target.
Notice what you are FOCUSING on! Is it the desires you wish to cause or is it the negativity and problems of the animal mind bias. Just look at your RESULTS for the answer my friend.
In 1990, Congress designated the first week in October every year as “National Mental Health Awareness Week.”
It seems each day we hear of someone that has a cold or flu, an injury, or maybe something worse, and we have so much compassion for them. As we say, “If you don’t have your health, you don’t have anything.
But, when it comes to “mental health”, it might not be a stretch to suggest most people become afraid. Why the difference in our attitudes about body health vs. brain health? That’s the reason for this years campaign by NAMI is called #IAmStigmaFree.
If you’re like me, “health” is one of your highest values in life. I run on the beach most days then have a salad for lunch. I like to hit the gym on the weekends to build muscle. And, besides supplements to make up for our poor farming strategies today, I work to keep my mind in peace and harmony, not letting most things generate stress… a leading cause of illness.
So where does the stigma of speaking about mind health come from? Well, since we’re basically conditioned hairless monkeys, taught to follow culture… we only need look back a hundred years to see that for CENTURIES, anyone that was even sad for an extended period of time might have been attacked for being posed by a demon, or worse, a danger to everyone that should be killed. We’re not too far from a barbaric past that still may be creating a superstition that seeking assistance to ensure our mind is running at optimal performance could get us fired from a job, banished from friends, lose a marriage, or worse.
Point: Let’s wake up into the 21st Century and abandon all superstition. Your brain is an organ like any other and DESERVES to be performing at optimal health levels!
If you knee continually hurt when you went running, wouldn’t it be great to find out why and the solution for it? It’s same thing for your mind! When the organ of our brain is not functioning optimally, life it just harder than it needs to be. Keeping our mind in optimal health doesn’t come from just come from will power.
For example, studies show that alcoholics could keep from relapsing, but supplementing with EPA oil, because it helps replenish the fatty oils of the brain that when depleted, have us be more angry and agitated. Many alcoholics us trying to use alcohol as medicine because they won’t seek any other kind of mental health help. Some times mind health shows up in a simpler way in that an entrepreneur has a slight adult ADHD and that’s the real reason why she keeps voraciously learning how to be successful but can’t seem to translate that into success. Many hugely successful entrepreneurs, like Sir Richard Branson, are are aware of their ADHD and that awareness helps them.
How can you check out your levels of mind health? Here’s a short quiz I discovered years ago when consulting for some dating coaches. We were dreaming of a day when everyone would first want to get their mind in optimal health, before dating, to have the best experience. Check out the quiz here: www.sanityscore.com
For those afraid of the word “sanity”, it doesn’t mean “not crazy”. It means “healthy condition” from the Middle French word sanité meaning “health“. The quiz is a health score for your mental health with insights into key things to look at that, if addressed, could make life happier, peaceful, and more like the success you dream about.
A contributor to Forbes Magazine has interviewed over 200 billionaires, Olympians, straight-A students and entrepreneurs and found this out: NONE of them use “to-do” lists.
He lists three key reasons a to-do list is a fail:
TIME is not accounted for
It doesn’t distinguish between URGENT and IMPORTANT tasks
It contributes to STRESS
What people tend to do with these lists is cherry pick the easy items and never complete all the tasks.
So what do these highly successful (and Highly Effective) people do: THEY USE A CALENDAR. They actually schedule tasks into their day and let the calendar tell them what to do, rather than their mind & emotions when they look over a pile of tasks.
I was having a conversation with a client today. The word “god” came up.
Some of us are challenged by the usage of the word god. It can bring up many neuro-associations in our unconscious mind, depending on our conditioning. A parallel: Some people hear the word “Budweiser” and think “yum” or see an icy cold mug in their mind and get thirsty. When I hear “Budweiser” I automatically smell a college party and a bunch of kids puking. It’s just an association. It’s just a word.
When it comes to the word “god”, I think of it this way:
God is just a word for the unknowable. Since we’re human, we try to understand everything as a human (i.e. anthropomorphize). It’s why many dog owners make the continual mistake of understanding their dog through a human projection, which is not helpful to the dog.
A dog is just a dog. The unknowable is just the unknowable. “God” is just “dog” spelled backwards. They are just words for something to experience personally.
A reminder that we project a human model on most things is a favorite quote by the writer Anaïs Nin:
“We see people and things not as they are, but as we are.“