our brain

It All Starts with You

I ran across this quote the other day and wanted to share it with you.

“If you knew your potential to feel good, you would ask no one to be different so that you can feel good.

You would free yourself of all of that cumbersome impossibility of needing to control the world, or control your mate, or control your child.

You are the only one who creates your reality.

For no one else can think for you, no one else can do it.

It is only you, every bit of it you.”

― Esther Hicks

“You are the one who creates your reality.” If you have been reading my posts for any time, you will know that this is a belief that I profess. And I profess it is not always easy. When we are hurt, angry, or sad, we curse the world and those around us for making us feel that way. The truth is that no one can make us feel any way. Outside forces may create undesirable situations, but we are the ones who choose to react to those situations. We create our reality by how we choose to react; how we choose to perceive situations; how we judge others’ actions.

When I am at my most powerful, is when I am at my most accepting. I see people for who they are without judgment or attack. I accept all circumstances as they are without my perception of what that means for me or others. It is a little like being the logical Spock from Star Trek, but it is not being heartless. Acceptance is seeing the world and those around us truthfully and compassionately. The ability to do this comes from disengaging the fear-sensing part of our brain. It comes from being able to turn off our unconscious stress reactions and consciously choose how we view and react to situations.

our brainMost individuals these days are ruled by the amygdala in their minds. This is the part of our brain that senses danger. And it lives to sense danger whether it is a physical assault on our bodies or a decrease in our 401k, the amygdala is ever ready to let us know we are in trouble. When the danger signal is sounded, the cingulate gyrus jumps in and pulls from its storehouse of knee-jerk reactions the appropriate response. This is terrific for when we need to run from a lion before we are eaten. We want our mind to immediately make us run instead of taking the time to consciously debate what action to take resulting in us becoming the lion’s lunch.

The amygdala and cingulate gyrus are a great system, usually. The problem these days is that we are constantly bombarded with real and imagined dangers. The media, Facebook, our peers, and our own replaying of hurts of the past or fears of the future, constantly keep us in a state of danger. This also traps us in the unconscious reactions of the cingulate gyrus which may appear as anger, depression, outrage, indignation, and reprisal. The key is to move your reactions from this unconscious system to conscious control of your reactions.

The anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) is where we consciously decide to react. This is the place Esther Hicks is encouraging us to go. This is where we can stop our unconscious negative reactions and consciously choose a new, better reality. This is where we can escape our fear-based mind and view situations openly. This is where we can find compassion, understanding, and peace. One of the reasons I preach the importance of mindfulness, is that meditation and conscious regulation of our minds is how we can strength our ACC and help us use that system instead of being blindly led by our unconscious danger reaction system.

Instead of trying to control your spouse, your boss, or world leaders, instead of feeling the need for others to change so you can feel good, spend some time releasing the unconscious fear-based mental system and strengthening your ACC. Try to find the truth of situations, not your judgments. Learn the power of acceptance instead of attack. And you will find that you can create a new, better reality for yourself.

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