Updated: Sep 18, 2020
We often see articles and posts on this subject and how to focus on what you want. The key in my view is to know the mechanics of why it works, not just do it.
It never ceased to amaze me that in families of more than one child, everyone was very different. The difference I later learned as a student, was because we all experience life very differently from each other. As an older sibling, a middle sibling or a youngest sibling. Each have the same genetic make-up, but that is where the similarity well and truly ends.
The stages of human development from birth to old age are quite well understood. In childhood, emotional maturity is reached at around 5-6 years old, however reasoning not until around late adolescence, at around 23-25 years old. Hence, why as adolescents we make errors of judgement as we emotionally know what we want, but rationally we have not yet got the connections right. They are still developing and building the reasoning and the final versions of their Internal Representational System (IRS) which will take them through adulthood. This is a system of taking an external experience, filtering it through their own past experiences of cause and effect, inner beliefs and their innate values and responding accordingly.
Their IRS is constantly being developed, for further reading Jean Piaget is a must for anyone working in the field of human development. Jean Piaget was a Swiss developmentalist, who made major theoretical and empirical contributions to our understanding of the origins and evolution of knowledge.
As an adult we both focus and rationalise our desires
A child focuses on what they want, they do not have the ability to reason whether or not it is possible to obtain or attain it, they just want it and will make every effort to get it. As an adult we both focus and rationalise want we want it. This is where we start to use our now mature and developed IRS to determine whether or not we shall obtain it, or deny ourselves it, or believe that we cannot obtain, attain or achieve it.
It is that inner belief that is the determining factor, that like all beliefs, is built on foundations that can be moved. People believed the World was flat, it was proven not to be the case, therefore the belief changed. If you believed you would fall of the edge of the World if you went to far, that would stop you moving forward, this is exactly what happens when we have a false belief or false reasoning.
Limiting our thinking builds a cage around ourselves
When we focus on what we believe to be true, then we become limited in our thinking. These limiting thoughts, do not just stop at tangible results, also impact self belief. The impact of these thoughts become the cage in which we entrap ourselves within. These thoughts can then become the focus in our lives, which we then create in our day to day lives.
Our thoughts, beliefs and our internal rationalisation for them are mutable and always have been, when this is realised, it provides the key to the lock on the door to our cage. Examples of thoughts which are often followed by actions:
I will never be successful: Therefore you will not be!
I don't deserve to get that job: Therefore you will not be
I am not good with numbers: Therefore you never will be!
I am not capable of doing that : Therefore you will not try!
We can never achieve that: Therefore you will not!
It's not for the likes of us: Therefore you will never have it.
These are all subconscious commands to your inner self. When you think this, you are confirming that it a fact and is a constant. In Spanish they have two words for Iam "soy and "estoy", soy being permanent, such as I am English and estoy being temporary, I am happy. in English we only have "I am". If therefore change the sentences above by removing the negatives: never, don't, not, never, we can make positive statements that perhaps are not yet true, but are likley to be so, if actions are taken.
I will be successful: Therefore you will not be!
I deserve to get that job: Therefore you will not be
I am not yet good with numbers: Therefore you never will be!
I am not yet capable of doing that : Therefore you will not try!
We can achieve that: Therefore you will not!
It's for the likes of us: Therefore you will never have it.
One slightly apparent perverse side to this, is that by thinking these things, we are actually creating a definition, label, place for ourselves that can be a great comfort, an identity to cling to, to which others can then see you as a victim, which is very rewarding for some. This leads into my previous post on the Karpman Drama Triangle. Read it Here
Think positively and you will be positive, think less so and you will be less so! Avoid situations and things that make you feel flat or down. Easier said than done, but it it key to changing a less than positive attitute. Sadly, today's bad news is since time began, wews worthy and the press and media love to rub in how bad it all is. This is counter productive as the impact is that in the end they will be seen in a less than positive light.
Turn around that reverse focus, so rather than looking at the future or situation through the wrong end of the binoculars, turn them around and focus on the positive bigger opportunity.