1133 Miles SW of Frostyville
May 30, 2020 (2:39 pm)
You know what really sucks?
Living day to day with this gnawing feeling….
… that you’re not even close to living up to your true potential.
All because you’re stuck in your head.
You think the answer is out there.
Get the books. Buy programs. Consume more information
Try new things.
Nothing seems to stick. It feels like groundhog day. You’re stuck at a certain level.
A lot people tell you to sack up. Do more. Hustle your face off.
Successful people will reverse engineer the steps they took that got them there, but that work for you, and deep down you know it, but you try it their way for a few months, maybe years.
The problem is….
you weren’t built for this shit.
Your brain is wired to scan the world for danger and avoid it.
You’re a survivor; designed to read subtle clues in your environment, including the body language and micro expressions of everyone in your atmosphere.
People wear masks in public. We all do. But, no matter how hard we try to conceal our own reactions they leak out all the time.
Your brain is always picking up and interpreting those leaks, and helping you create a personal narrative that makes you feel normal.
Three problems to address.
- Learn to override your genetic pre-disposition to avoid any sort of danger, suffering, or pain
- Overcome OPO Syndrome.
- Slow your mind down and bring it in tune with the real flow of time.
Let’s unpack those ideas one by one.
Override your genetic
A large portion of your brain is only concerned with safety, fitting in, and maintaining the “status quo”.
It works on pattern recognition.
And once you form any sort of pattern, and maintain it for any length of time, that pattern becomes part of your identity.
It’s a bassackwards way to live, but most of us are doing life that way, letting it unfold and getting into grooves that we don’t consciously create or choose.
A big problem here is, the part of your brain trying to keep you safe, doesn’t have a long term view of life.
It doesn’t care if you save money, eat healthy, workout daily, or do any of the stuff you know you should do.
The only mission is to not feel vulnerable, and stay alive.
It Takes Practice to Escape the Gravity of Your Habitual
State of Being.
The most successful people you know might have been hard wired to focus and push through the fears that accompany any sort of challenge they set out.
They may have a higher threshold for discomfort than you.
Or maybe, they just learned tricks to delay gratification.
No worries. You’re not screwed. Nor are you destined to fail.
Almost everything is trainable, for nearly everyone.
Overcome OPO Syndrome.
You’re wired to want to be part of a tribe.
A large part of your brain is concerned with how you appear to other people.
I call it “Other People’s Opinion Syndrome” and it’s a real problem for a lot of people.
It’s that voice nagging you when you try to do something new, it keeps you playing small, hiding in the back of the room, and going along with the crowd.
The closer the person is to you, the harder is to overcome.
Think about how badly you want your mom or dad to “see you” and respect/love you.
Some people go their entire lives living for other people’s opinions.
It’s easy to an entire lifetime and feel like you don’t know who you are.
So few people I talk to have taken the time to examine what they’re all about, and why.
They’re too busy. Life gets in the way. They don’t have the time.
All of those excuses are seemingly valid, and if those are your excuses, I beg of you, before you are actually out of time, to figure out and develop your own personal philosophy.
I’ve seen what it looks like at the end of a life full of regrets.
I watched a person who lived in a prison of OPO and had a list of things he’d never done. It was painful and left a hole in my heart, and impression in my soul.
Watching him pass lead me to my Personal Philosophy.
“Every moment is extraordinary.
Don’t waste precious moments on things that don’t matter,
especially when you’re in the presence of people who do.”
Be On Time
Einstein’s Theory of General Relativity says space and time are one thing, and that time is relative to the observer.
Universal time and clock/calendar time are two very separate concepts.
Unfortunately, we’re addicted to one, and hardly ever notice the other.
Your mission from this point forward is to train your mind in the hardest discipline known to mankind… Focus.
Learn How to Pay Attention.
Because of the way we’re wired, and exacerbated by a combination of the relatively new structure of society and flood of information, it feels nearly impossible for most of us to focus and be deeply present.
This isn’t new.
Buddha taught about this thousands of years ago.
Very few people have ever achieved any sort of “enlightenment”.
And that’s okay.
The goal here isn’t enlightenment or even self-realization.
I am just suggesting that you…
Slow down, do less, and practice mindfulness two ways.
First, formally sit and do a single point meditation every day and build up to more than 20 minutes daily.
Second, take a little pause before doing anything and bring your mind as fully present in whatever it is you’re doing at that time.
Paying attention to your attention is a skill that when practiced you can get out of your own way and let life flow through you.
You can discover what the flow of time really feels like, and it’s a LOT slower than you imagine.
This practice can help you bring yourself back to center when you feel like you’re behind time, and help you slow down when you get lost in the future.
It’s a practice that when combined with your personal philosophy will guide you daily to make small, subtle, lasting changes.
Instead of being stuck in the GAP between who you’re being and who you wish you were, you’ll be able to start pushing against the edges of your comfort zone, and expanding it day by day.
Once you have your philosophy (that takes time and effort) things will flow differently, but you don’t have to wait for that to be in place before getting started with practicing focus and opening your awareness.
That will help you find your flow.
To take this even further, do yourself a favor and audit the basics of well-being.
- Sleep Well (7-8 hours nightly)
- Consume Well (40 oz water before 4pm, balanced diet, good media)
- Move Well (4 and half hours of sweat a week)
- Think Well (Your self talk matters. Be kinder to you.)
Hope this helps,
Love your face.
PS. I’m continuing this Saturday Soul Surfing Series and if you want an email sent to you each Saturday sign up below.