Your Brain, Friend or Foe?

To a lot of people this title may not appear to make any sense. Whats does it mean? How could my brain be against me? It's under my control isnt it?

Yes your brain is under your control, at least to a certain extent. Our Brains are super computers, an internal universe, intricate and complex. Throughout your life, whether you realise it or not, your brain is being hard wired to protect you and do what it thinks is right for you based on its programming. It is programmed biologically, genetically, through your environment and your experiences. Once these programs are set they run subconsciously, without any major effort being required and therein lies the problem.

For example-

Say you keep getting knocked back by potential employers for jobs you want. Time and time again it happens and you are stuck where you are, at the bottom of the ladder as always. The more it happens, the more it hurts and affects you emotionally. Over time without realising you basically stop trying, you tell yourself that you are still trying, but you actually don't take any physical action towards changing this situation. Why?

As you become more emotionally affected, your brain recognises the pattern. It sees what the cause of your stress is, possibly low self esteem, depression, low confidence and/or low self worth and then begins to influence your behaviour. So what does it do? It does whatever it has to in order to avoid what it perceives to be a painful experience and sabotages any action or major movement towards it. Rejection becomes so painful that the idea of it is enough to have your brain running for the hills and it takes you with it. You end up at a point where you don't even want to try.

You may think, "surely I would notice this happening".

Most likely you won't see it at all. Your brain will implant thoughts, reasons and excuses that at first glance appear completely legitimate and make complete sense. That's exactly what it wants you to believe. Even with a good amount of self-awareness, a pattern may only become obvious to you after someone else points it out, or something you hear or see suddenly reveals it to you.

So what can you do?

Cultivating a sense of awareness is a start. Simply understanding how this can actually occur will allow you to identify many of these flawed programs that may be sabotaging your progress through life.

Another way to identify these programs is to look to your past. Is there a pattern? A pattern of bad relationships, incompatible employment, lack of progression, bad financial decisions, poor health choices and the like. These patterns can affect many parts of your life and so identifying them is a big step in changing them. Breaking negative patterns and replacing them with positive, healthy patterns is the goal, but first they must be identified.

You can program your Brain to be your best friend, but if left unattended, it may be programmed through the conditioning of life to be your ultimate foe.