“Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.” – Viktor E. Frankl
Choosing our own way sounds simple enough, but in the real world it’s tricky without an understanding of how our mind operates. Our thoughts and ideas influence how we perceive and experience the world around us. Our mind is the filter that the world comes through before we apply any meaning to what we experience with our senses. Nothing you see outside of yourself is directly experienced, it is all passed through the filter of your beliefs, values, and worldview. With that said, is it possible to change the filters of our mind?
What you think about, you begin to experience in the world. The world is a blank canvas, and you paint it with your thoughts.
Without the human mind, the world is a blank slate. We give meaning to all of the things that we experience with the ideas that we hold in our mind. Looking at life this way, it becomes evident that the person in charge of creating your own reality- is you. The importance of holding in our minds positive, and empowering thoughts can’t be understated. There’s a part of the brain known as the Reticular Activating System that’s responsible for filtering through all the messages we’re bombarded with and “deleting” the messages that are unimportant or unfamiliar to us. One thing that the RAS really excels at is bringing to our attention the things that we think about consistently.
If you are constantly thinking about how peaceful the world is, your Reticular Activating System will display for you all of the wonderful things around you, deleting or pushing aside messages that aren’t in line with your beliefs.
The more positive and empowering your thoughts are, the more powerful and empowering your world appears. With your mind working to show you the things you most frequently think about, this opens us up to a world of opportunity. If you are constantly focusing on how beneficial you are to a company, and how good you are at your job, your RAS will capture for you situations where you see improvements that could be made. Meanwhile, fa person who is constantly focused on how worried he is that he is going to be fired, his RAS will capture and display for him all of the reasons why he is soon to be out of a job. It’s not magic, its just how the mind works. Which way do you want to live your life?
Knowing that our minds work to make conscious the things around us that are similar to what we focus on, we can choose to consciously focus on the things we want, and thus begin seeing more of that in our world experiences.
Our minds paint the blank canvas of the earth. Is the earth a great place to be or a dangerous place? It really depends on the person thinking the thought. With the wisdom that we can expand ourselves based on what we choose to focus our minds on, this empowers us to develop ourselves in new ways just by changing the way we think. By changing our thoughts, we empower Authentic Growth within ourselves, allowing us to conscious make changes in our mind and to see corresponding changes in the outer world. If I desire to be better at my job, I can focus on how great it is finding things to improve in my company, or on how much I love working with my co-workers. Even if at the time it doesn’t seem that way to you, as you focus more of your thoughts on the better aspects of your job, your RAS will display for your conscious mind more things that are relevant to your predominant thoughts.
Though the world, and our experience of it, at first seems to be entirely based on the random events that buffet us daily, it is really our reaction to and our beliefs about these events that create our experience of life.
You can choose today to deliberately hold and focus on thoughts of what you want in your life. As you catch yourself drifting into negative territory, on thoughts of what you don’t want, kindly ease yourself back into focusing on the good things in life. This corrective action alone trains the mind to show you the positive about every situation you encounter, which not only enhances your life but also shows you opportunities where other people may not see them. The value that comes in seeing opportunities that go unnoticed by others is immense, and can very well be the difference between having success or just living average life.
The best thing we can do to generate more success in our lives is to consciously filter our own thoughts towards positive and empowering thoughts, such that we make it a habit for our unconscious mind to do this job for us.
Once the unconscious mind makes it a habit to look for the good in things, you’ve essentially enhanced and reprogrammed your brain to make your reality a happier place. You will still see the negative aspects of things, however your mind will give more weight to the positive, beneficial things in your world. With these positive aspects enlarged in your world, you will experience the happier parts of life in greater detail than others around you whom focus on the negative aspects of their lives. This is the difference between a person who is chronically happy versus a person who is chronically unhappy. Focus on what you want, and the world will appear as if there is more of that around you. In reality, we give meaning to everything we see in the world based on what we’re taught growing up and what beliefs we have formed, but as we focus on the good in life- it will appear as if the world is filled with it.
Do yourself a favor. Change your habitual thought patterns so that you see the good in everything around you. Appreciate the good things you have, and your RAS will make conscious more of the good things around you to appreciate. Love yourself, and you will find more things to love about yourself. Be whole, and you will feel more complete with each day that passes by.
You are responsible for your experience of the world. As each person is given the circumstances they live in, they are equally given the conscious choice to decide how to react to and live in those circumstances. Choose to impregnate your mind with the thoughts that bring peace to your world, and you will certainly find it.
Links related to consciously focusing your thoughts:
-Anthony from AuthenticGrowth.com