Seems many of you expressed an interest in my history as an Elvis impersonator. The most common question: “Will you show us a picture?”
Well, OK. But no laughing, please.
Maybe just a little. I am “All shook up.”
How the brain reprograms itself
So, we’ve been discussing how to reprogram the brain, but have you noticed how often the brain reprograms itself?
I’ll bet you have noticed it, but you didn’t call it reprogramming.
You called that reprogramming a habit.
Your brain is constantly reprogramming itself to make your life easier. Usually, this starts with something you consciously do.
Here’s an all-to-common example. You had a busy week at work. It’s Friday. You’re exhausted, and really don’t feel like cooking. You deserve a treat after the week you’ve just put in. You grab a take away on your way home. No big deal.
But, you did it. You got your hit of fats, sugars, and salts. And you got that reward instantly. No cooking involved.
And so next week, when again you’re tired, what do you remember? How easy it was to pick up something on the way home.
And you do it again.
Still no biggie.
But, the thing is, you’ve now got the attention of your unconscious mind which is sensing a pattern.
The third week wasn’t as stressful. You decide to go home and cook.
But the forth week, you again grab a take away as you drive home Friday.
And before you’re even aware of it, Friday has become take away night at your house.
A couple of months go by with your Friday night treat becoming the new normal, and again you have a frantic week at work. But this time it’s Wednesday when you’re headed for home and realize you don’t feel like cooking.
You treat yourself to a pizza.
Well, why not? Friday night isn’t a treat any more. Friday is now take away night. That’s where your unconscious mind has seen this pattern before.
You don’t do the Wednesday pizza thing for a couple of weeks, but this particular Wednesday you’re running late. You stop at the pizzeria so you won’t miss your show.
You start saying things like, “Friday is take away night. Wednesday is pizza night.”
You know that leaves Thursday night free for…
It’s not that your unconscious mind is working against you. It wants to make your life easier. That’s the whole purpose of habits.
And, they start as pattern recognition. You’ll recall that’s where we started this conversation a few newsletters ago.
As we’ve seen, the structure of a habit seems to be: cue, behaviour, reward.
So, if we can recognize the cue (stress at work) we can change the behaviour (stopping for take away or pizza) and the reward (not cooking tonight).
Doesn’t that make sense? We create habits by our brains recognizing patterns. We break those habits the same way. And once we understand how the brain works, it becomes easy.
What habits do you have that you’d like to eliminate by reprogramming? The first step is to notice the pattern.
Have a great week.
John “Habit” Cassidy-Rice
The NLP Practitioner and NLP Master Practitioner live training is getting a lot of attention. Also we are running the NLP Train the Trainer, in case you would love to make a living out of training NLP.
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