Author: Christine Howitz
What are you focusing on ?
It’s often said that, seek and you shall find? What you focus on is truly what you get. The challenge is people do their focusing unconsciously and without intention. How they focus, and what they focus on, runs automatically which means that sometimes they focus on what they DON’T want and get it. In addition to this focusing on what you don’t want creates lousy feelings – a bit like a hangover but without the fun part first!
Take a moment to experience this….
Once you’ve read these instructions close your eyes…. Think of all the things in the room that are green. Think only of green objects. Everything that is green. How many green objects are you able to count with your eyes closed?
Once you’ve completed that exercise, ask yourself, “How many objects are in the room that are red?
Because you were focused on the objects that were green, you would have searched for the green objects. You would have deleted the other colours. You would have been able to recall many more objects that were green than were red.
This simple exercise demonstrates how you mind operates. It sorts for what you tell it to focus on.
Focus on hardship in life, and will experience more hardship. Focus on life’s injustices and you will experience more injustices. Focus in ill health and you will experience ill health. Focus on your weaknesses and you will experience disappointing results.
Luckily, you can control what you focus your mind on, which means you can control whether you want to experience lousy feelings.
So how do you re-tune your focus?
Practice letting go of emotional resistance, when you’re emotionally resisting the way things are, what you’re actually doing inside your head is making pictures or other internal representations of what you don’t want, and then emotionally reacting to these internal images with resistance. You think of what you don’t want, are afraid of, or are worried about, and then try to move away from it or avoid it.
Resisting doesn’t mean you accept whatever happens without any attempt to shape events the way you actually want them to be. It does mean, though, that you remain emotionally okay and unattached to the outcome while you are working to change those things you may be able to change, or while you’re dealing with those things you cannot change.
You make a choice.
The choice you make to resist or not resist is a choice when something happens that is other than what you would have liked. You can either resist, which means you suffer in some way or, you can just prefer that things be different, in which case you can remain happy and peaceful. This applies to things you can do nothing about, and also to things you can do something about.
What Creates Resistance?
To resist, you have to focus on what you don’t want, with the idea that you want to move away from it or, in some way avoid it! You give your mind an instruction to create or draw to you, whatever you’re focusing on.
When you make an internal image of what you don’t want, your mind thinks you want it. Why does your mind do such a lousy thing to you? Because it takes what you focus on as a literal instruction to get or create something for you. Your mind doesn’t distinguish between those things you focus on that you WANT and those things you focus on that you DON’T WANT. Be present and conscious enough to only entertain an internal representation of what you really want.
You Control Your Focus.
Luckily, the ONE thing you have complete and total control over is WHAT YOU FOCUS ON. That means that when you feel bad, it’s a warning light going off that you are focusing on what you don’t want – and that by consciously changing that focus to what you want, you can change how you feel. – Try it….
Not only that, you can also change the results you get, because you change the instructions you’re giving your brain from what you DON’T want to what you DO want.
Your mind is REALLY good at creating whatever instructions you give it. Right now, with no training whatsoever, you are as proficient as any human who has ever lived at creating.
You Are in Charge, I Promise.
You can decide, in any moment, what you focus your mind on, what thoughts you think, what pictures you make inside your head. You can decide to focus on what you want, and if you do, you’ll get it, and you’ll feel good on the way to getting it.
Here is my top tip: take the reins of your mind. Become aware, moment by moment, of what you’re doing inside your head, and if it isn’t what you want, if what you experience, either inside or out, isn’t what you intended, exercise your power to change your focus.
I’m not saying it will be easy at first… It takes tremendous persistence, because the part of you that thinks it needs to focus on danger in order to be safe has a lot of momentum. But if you keep paying attention, and keep exercising control and choice about what you focus on, it will become easier and easier.
For the next seven days, be mindful of your focus – act as if what you focus on is what you get. Decide to search for evidence of your own strengths and the strengths of others. Choose to see the positive in each moment. Focus on what you can control and influence, rather than what you can’t.
What we focus on is what we get, to the exclusion of everything else….what will you chose?