Stories I only tell my friends: The Power Of Belief-System

August 26, 2011

21-DAY FORMULA TO FORM POSITIVE HABITS

Filed under: Uncategorized — mylittleblackpen @ 3:51 am

Auto-suggestion

What is auto-suggestion? An auto-suggestion is a statement made in the present tense, of the kind of person you want to be. Auto-suggestions are like writing a commercial to yourself about yourself, for yourself. They influence both your conscious and subconscious mind which in turn influences attitude and behavior. Auto-suggestions are a way to program your subconscious mind. They can be either positive or negative. Examples of negative auto-suggestions are:

  • I’m tired
  • I’m not an athlete
  • I have a poor memory
  • I’m not good at math

When we repeat to ourselves a negative auto-suggestion, our subconscious mind believes it and becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy and starts reflecting in our behavior. For example, when I am talking to someone and I forget what I had to say, I tell the other person, “See, I forgot what I wanted to say, I have such a poor memory.”

People, who come into contact with crime the first time, hate it. With constant exposure they get used to it and if the exposure is long enough, they may embrace it. And they become creators of their own misfortune. When a person repeats a belief long enough, it sinks into the subconscious and become reality. A lie repeated long enough becomes accepted as the truth.

Positive auto-suggestions are being widely used in the field of sports and medicine. Why make positive statements? Because we want to create a picture in our minds of what we want to have rather than what we don’t. Any picture that we hold in our mind becomes reality. Auto-suggestions are a process of repetition. A person who repeats a statement long enough lets it sink into the subconscious mind. For example, I am relaxed. I am cool, calm, and collected.

Positive statements are made because we think in pictures and not in words. If I say, “Don’t think of the blue elephant,” what is the first picture that comes to you mind? The blue elephant. If I say “father,” what comes to your mind? A picture of your father. Did you start spelling f-a-t-h=e-r? of course not. When the negative word comes in the auto-suggestion, it forms a negative picture which we want to avoid.

 Why in the present tense? Because our mind cannot tell the difference between a real experience and an imagined one. For example, parents are expecting their child to come home at 9.30 p.m. but the kid is not home and it is now 1 a.m. What is going through the parents’ mind? They are probably hoping everything’s okay. “I hope the kid didn’t get into an accident.” What is happening to their blood pressure? It is going up! This is an imagined experience. The reality could be that the kid is having fun at a party, is irresponsible, and did not get home when he was supposed to.

Now reverse the scenario. Supposing the kid was very responsible and was actually coming home at 9.30 p.m. but got into an accident, and still didn’t get home at 1 a.m. What is happening to the parents’ blood pressure? It is still going up! The first scenario was an imagined experience. The second one was a real experience but the body’s response in both cases was identical. Our mind cannot tell the difference between a real and an imagined experience.

Prepare the subconscious

How can we use auto-suggestions to eliminate negative habits and develop positive ones? We have all used auto-suggestions unconsciously. For example, when you have to catch an early morning flight, you automatically tell yourself that you have got to get up. And invariably, you do (sometimes, even without an alarm clock). A prepared subconscious mind has hunches and gut feelings.

Auto-suggestion is a way to program and condition our mind to make a statement into a self-fulfilling prophecy. Auto-suggestion is a repetitive process through which we feed our subconscious with positive statements which translate into reality. Repetition alone is not enough, unless it is accompanied by emotions and feelings. Auto-suggestion without visualization will not produce results. The first time our mind receives an auto-suggestion it rejects it. Why? It is an alien thought, contrary to our belief system. Success would depend on our ability to concentrate and repeat the process. Steps to follow on auto-suggestions:

  1. Go to a spot where you won’t be disturbed
  2. Write down your suggestions

The self-discipline to finish what one starts is imperative. Auto-suggestion is a powerful character building tool.

Translating auto-suggestion into reality

  1. Make a list of your auto-suggestions in the present tense
  2. Repeat auto-suggestion at least twice a day; first thing in the morning and the end of the day. This is because in the morning, the mind is fresh and receptive and at night you deposit the positive picture into your subconscious overnight
  3. Repeat it consecutively for 21 days until it becomes a habit
  4. Auto-suggestions alone will not work. They need visualization

Visualization

Visualization is the process of creating and seeing a mental picture of the kind of thing you want to have or do, or the kind of person you want to be. Visualization goes hand in hand with auto-suggestion. Auto-suggestion without visualization is mechanical repetition and will be ineffective. In order to see results, auto-suggestion must be accompanied by feelings and emotions (Visualization).

CAUTION! Auto-suggestion may not be acceptable to the mind the first time you do it because it is an alien thought. For example, if for the past few decades I have believed that I have a poor memory and now all of a sudden, I tell myself, “I have a good memory”, my mind will throw it out, saying, “You liar! You have a bad memory” Because that is what it has believed up to this point. It will take 21 days to dispel this notion. Why 21 days? Because it takes minimum of 21 days of conscious, consecutive practice to formulate a habit.

The big question is: Is 21 days of conscious effort a heavy price to pay to change a lifetime for the better? It all sounds simple but it is not easy. I am not surprised to see how few people go through this routine.

A Little Black Pen

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