Have you heard someone ever say this, or maybe you’ve said it yourself? It’s an easy habit to fall into; thinking this way. Context doesn’t really matter either; we hear this in every aspect of life: I’ve always been heavy. I’ve never been that smart. I always pick bad men/women. I’ve always had a poor self image. I’ve always been lousy with money. The list is endless but you get the point.
Society as a whole (both public and scientific) has accepted this belief system for centuries but, according to Jeffrey M. Schwartz, MD in his profound book The Mind and the Brain: Neuroplasticity and the Power of Mental Force, this doesn’t have to be the case. Through his research and case studies, Dr. Schwartz discovered that the brain has the ability to be drastically rewired. He discovered that by focusing ones attention away from negative behaviors and toward positive ones, one can make permanent changes to their own neural pathways … the power of the mind to shape the brain!
Without getting too crazy with details, it kind of work’s like this: neural pathways are like roads in the sense that the more you use the road the more defined the road becomes in say the form of a track. Once the pathway becomes entrenched so to speak, it becomes easier to follow that pathway, leading you to the same place (I’ve always been like this).
For the athletes reading this, it’s along the lines of muscle memory, right. The more you practice a movement the better you get at said movement and the less you have to think about it. Your brain doesn’t know whether it’s a good movement or a bad movement, just like it doesn’t know if it’s a good (positive) thought or a bad (negative) thought; it just does what it’s asked to do.
Now suppose you decided the movement was a bad (because you’re injured) movement, what are your choices. 1) You can continue to do the same movement and entrench the pathway even more with the same outcome … injury! Or, 2) you can change the bad movement to a good movement and rewire (change) the pathway with a different outcome …. NO injury.
The challenge for most comes at this point because to change it takes time, patience, commitment, perseverance and a BIG desire. See, just as it took you some time to create muscle memory for your bad movement pathway, it takes time to rewire it to the good pathway. No different then when we talk about the way we think. If you have been indoctrinated to think that you are not worthy, then you will need to indoctrinate yourself into believing that are worthy, that you do have something to contribute.
Just as it’s simple to rewire a good movement, it’s also simple to rewire good thinking but, neither are easy to do. One MUST surround herself with good thoughts, good people, and good environments and get rid of the toxic, drama ridden crap!! In the interest of keeping this short, enough said!