Have you completed your “Wow I’ve made awesome progress” list? And are you rightfully proud of your progress?
What have you decided to dump?
What have you decided to adapt?
And what are you going to repeat?
Did any interesting patterns develop?
Well, they did for me….
The areas of my life that experienced the least growth; the ones that were lagging behind were those I had not consistently focused my attention on.
Now I’m pleased to report that most of these neglected areas were a deliberate choice, like:
• Getting stuck in comfort zones
• Avoiding important (but intimidating) goals and tasks
• Being around stressful people or situations
• Unproductive or excessive demands on my time and energy
• Unhealthy lifestyle habits
• Sabotaging beliefs and behaviors
• Blame and excuses
• Fear inducing information
• Anything that diminishes my confidence and self esteem
• Situations I have no control over
• Where I failed and how far I still have to go…..
These are things I don’t want cluttering up my life and sabotaging my progress, so I’m happy to see them atrophy through lack of attention.
I noticed another pattern. The areas of my most impressive personal and professional growth were ones I had consistently and deliberately focused the majority of my attention on.
And this is why…..
Neuro-imaging of the brain shows us that initially setting a goal is a conscious activity, but it is in the non-conscious mind areas that behaviors become consolidated; to the point of being unconscious and automatic; in other words habits.
Becoming unconsciously competent is achieved then through repetition. Neuro-imaging findings also indicate that neural connections are stronger when created using strong emotions. This is why our goals and intentions have to trigger powerful feelings of passion and desire, to work.
We know we can rewire our brains. All the research in brain plasticity tells us so.
And if you still doubt this, you only have to look at your sabotaging habits to know this is true! Try this experiment.
Think back and identify what your priorities were at a specific time in your life. What did you want so desperately back then, that you focused relentlessly on it all the time? You will notice these were the areas of your life that flourished – for better or worse!
This is why achieving balance in our lives is a lifelong process. We can’t focus on everything at once. So we need to consciously direct our attention into areas we want to develop; that may be lagging behind and sabotaging our progress.
If you’re looking for a miracle recipe in the year ahead, you know what to do!
Through daily practice, we can dramatically reshape our personality, how we respond to what is going on around us, how we feel, and the reality we want to create in the future.
This is why what we make a priority and focus our attention on consistently is SO important. Your mental air space is prime real estate.
Leverage it wisely – it can create miracles!