Last time we talked about limitations and today we will continue that theme in discussing how you might subconsciously limit yourself and to give you more insight into your brain, how it works, and how I help you crack the code to help you achieve limitless thinking.... ready?
See, our brain is really amazing (as I've said many times before)! It helps us mediate and moderate between keeping us safe and giving in to our unconscious impulses. As I shared a couple emails ago, your primal fear responses are meant to keep you alive. However, in our modern world, there's a very unlikely chance that you'll be chased by a saber-toothed tiger at any point in time. So, our fears and fear responses have evolved to adjust to the times...
Similarly, your adjustment to safety and what you perceive as safe has changed. This is how you may live your life very similarly (and eerily!) to the main characters from the movie Birdbox right now.
Let me explain, stay with me here.
In the last few weeks just about everyone on the internet has been buzzing about the movie Bird Box. Have you seen it?
Whether you have or not, here's the gist (without giving away any spoilers). A woman and her child are trying to find safety because there is an unknown danger in their world outside which when they see it with the naked eye, it causes them to go insane and they die (the method in which they die varies). In order to stay safe from this outside and unknown terror, they must blindfold themselves to keep from seeing it and to stay alive...
Now... this is not that much different than how your ego responds to the world... And, in order for me to go deeper, I need to give a mini psychoeducation lesson on the human psyche. Thanks, Freud!
See, our good old pal Sigmund Freud concluded that the human psyche is comprise of three aspects: the id, ego, and superego.
The id engages in primary process thinking, which is primitive, illogical, irrational, and fantasy oriented. This form of process thinking has no comprehension of objective reality, and is selfish and wishful in nature.
The superego incorporates the values and morals of society which are learned from one's parents and others and develops around the age of 3-5, when we start to learn rules and structure.
The ego develops to mediate between the unrealistic id and the external real world. It is the decision-making component of personality. Ideally, the ego works by reason, whereas the id is chaotic and unreasonable.
The ego operates according to the reality principle, working out realistic ways of satisfying the id’s demands, often compromising or postponing satisfaction to avoid negative consequences of society. The ego considers social realities and norms, etiquette and rules in deciding how to behave. It helps you moderate between the subconscious urges and ‘what will they think of me?’ type stuff.
Like the id, the ego seeks pleasure (i.e., tension reduction) and avoids pain, but unlike the id, the ego is concerned with devising a realistic strategy to obtain pleasure. (e.g. How can I eat pizza, avoid the gym, and lose weight?) And.. ego has no concept of right or wrong; something is good simply if it achieves its end of satisfying without causing harm to itself or the id.
So, with all that said, whenever you are striving for change, and you are challenged to grow, your ego is fighting you because it’s uncomfortable (pain principle) and it seeks to reduce tension.
Similarly, you are working against your primal urges (the id) to feed your hunger (real or imagined meaning physical hunger and head hunger) and trying to stay within society’s norms (superego), you do your best to STAY SAFE (using your ego) … which means... functioning largely from the comfort of autopilot behaviors.
So, how is this like Bird Box?
You’re walking around, like the character in Bird Box, trying to avoid pain and getting hurt and doing what you’ve always done, and doing what’s comfortable staying inside the blindfold living the old autopilot life... for the fear of change, for the fear of loss, for the fear of being uncomfortable and as a result of the fear of the unknown; because the world is SCARY!!
So for a minute, you peak out your blindfold…. And just for that minute, just for a mini-second... hoping you’ll catch a glimpse of safety, hoping that you’ll soon reach safety and at that point in your life, when you reach safety you will have achieved the GOAL.
You’ll end up having it all (the body you want, the life you want, etc.) ... so, you put yourself out there… (you change your food, fitness, and you start to make lifestyle changes) and when it gets hard, you pull yourself back into the blindfold and go back to old behaviors….
EEEK! You’re still anxious, scared, and frustrated because you didn’t achieve your goal of getting to this proverbial "safe space" in your life, meaning you haven’t gotten to goal, or you’ve regained since goal, or you don’t know how to stay at goal…
So, then... you may have a tendency to flip in and out of this blindfold metaphor feeling lost and confused.
And… because you’re wearing your blindfold as you walk through life, you’re not in tune with your own truth, and you don’t REALLY know WHO YOU ARE… at all.
And... you might even avoid getting to know yourself (the inner you), or seek to work through life issues, past issues, eating issues, etc., because it’s uncomfortable, and its WORK!
So, essentially, how you are living your life like BIRDBOX is hoping that you can dodge pain, struggle, and life issues by weaving your way in and out of the blindfold completely bypassing your inner fulfillment.
And, when you do that, you deny part of those inner impulses which leads you to push back towards comfort (food, for example) and then you judge yourself for acting out. Then you get brave enough to take off your blindfold for another round of ‘let’s do it’ and when it gets tough, or lose faith in yourself and your journey, you retreat back into old patterns.
Also, the blindfold serves as both a safety net and an inner prison because you don’t know how to get out fearing the world outside. The truth is, the world outside is GOING DEEP WITHIN YOURSELF.
Seeking change is about challenging yourself, challenging the growth process, letting go of fears, asking for help, sometimes praying for help, allowing yourself to receive support and guidance, and pushing through NO MATTER WHAT.
Like the character in birdbox, you are looking for the place in your life where you can FINALLY once and for all take off your blindfold and live in peace.
And, you can’t trust yourself or life long enough to take your blindfold off and take the consistent action needed, or to get to know yourself deep enough to heal the wounds and really become the person you’re meant to be.
So, how do you start?
It all begins with TRUST IN ACTION!
Trust yourself to start making better choices to help you achieve your goals!
CALL out your fears and your excuse for what they are (hiding behind the blindfold)
Take baby steps and give yourself reasonable markers to achieve (PS: no one achieves perfection on their first try!)
Allow yourself to endure the ‘scary’, you’ll learn something from it and you’ll be grateful when you did!
Learn more about yourself, what fulfills you, and what you NEED to grow and what you are AVOIDING in your life… (this helps you to love yourself)
Now that I’ve given you action steps... and I’ve called you out for hiding behind the mask, now you’ve got to take the action.
Remember, only you can take the steps for yourself to succeed on this journey. I can give you the map to that magical cabin in the woods where you are led to that safe place (the safe place inside your heart, mine and soul) but only you have the POWER to do the work.
What do you choose each and every day?
Do you choose the same thing that you have been choosing? OR
Do you begin to choose differently?
Do you want to stay the same? Or are you ready to grow?
Take some time and think on it… I trust that you’ll make the best decision for you today.
Now let’s get moving!