Reality is a series of patterns created by your thinking.
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Imagine you could think your way out of bullshit.
The headline of this story is from writer Alex Mathers who says,
Many if not all of our struggles are not due to the actual reality of an experience, but to how we think of that experience.
Sounds like hogwash at first. This story could be the seed to the change in your thinking if you’re not a believer in the power of thoughts like me.
The Supernatural Power of Thought
In 1986 a man entered a triathlon race. During the bicycle riding leg of the race he describes having “the privilege of being run over by an SUV.” What luck, huh? Most of us would see it as a nightmare.
The red Bronco truck slammed into the back of his bike, catapulting him sky-high into the air. The landing wasn’t so birdlike. With the full force of gravity he landed square on his backside. Ouch!
The Bronco was still heading right for him. He grabbed the bumper of the truck to avoid being run over. While holding onto the bumper he was dragged down the road for a bit until the elderly driver figured out what had occurred.
Six vertebrae were broken in the accident. The aftermath was brutal.
He woke up with many neurological problems, a variety of pain in many places, a lack of ability to control his movements, a lack of feeling in his stringy legs, and varying degrees of numbness.
The surgeon in charge proposed a cut and paste job: take fragments from the hips, paste them over a steel rod, cut out a few vertebrae here, put them back over there. The chance of permanent disability was high.
The young man was high on youth. He refused the surgery. The odd solution he came up with was to use his mind to heal himself.
I believe that there’s an intelligence, an invisible consciousness, within each of us that’s the giver of life.
I reasoned at the time that if this intelligence was real and if it willfully, mindfully, and lovingly had such amazing abilities, maybe I could take my attention off my external world and begin to go within and connect with it.
For the next three months the young man mentally — and physically — rebuilt his spine. Nine and a half weeks later he went back to living a normal life. He hasn’t felt back pain since.
This is the story of Dr. Joe Dispenza, a neuroscientist. It seems wild what he experienced. Joe used his mind to take him away from disability. He believes we are the placebo. When something harms you physically or mentally you can heal yourself. Your body can produce the same tonics to heal you from the things that attack it. Your mind can also produce the toxicity needed to destroy your well-being too. It’s an interesting strategy.
He healed his thinking (intangible) and his physical body (tangible) with nothing but his brain.
A tiny shift in beliefs
I didn’t blindly follow Joe’s advice. I’ve witnessed something similar myself. I spent years feeling sick. I thought I had an eating disorder. It turns out my thoughts were switching on an invisible self-destruct button.
The initial times my brain worked against me were acceptable (public speaking, for example). But when I couldn’t even sit down for 15 minutes with a friend for coffee, I knew something wasn’t right.
I spent time challenging — not changing — my thinking. I questioned my beliefs about life. When I thought about my beliefs in my head they were nothing but a lie. When I wrote my beliefs down on paper it was easier to see the truth. Seeing is believing.
So I started writing down the opposite of each belief. What if riding an elevator wasn’t a chance to get trapped in a confined space and be publicly sick from my terrifying thoughts? What if riding an elevator was a chance to work at my dream job in finance?
Slowly, I began to question my beliefs. Then I began to question my thinking — the process my brain went to, to arrive at those beliefs. It became quickly apparent my thinking needed a short-circuit. My thinking was full of defects.
I began slowly challenging each belief in the real-world. What if I could provide evidence of each belief being false? That’s exactly what happened. I wrote a list down of all my fears. I wrote a list of everything that made me sick. Then I set up a tiny experiment to see if I could get one experience that proved the underlying belief wrong.
The key was to start with small fears. I knew I couldn’t overcome my fear of flying by starting with an around the world trip on a jumbo jet. So I started with a 45-minute flight to a close destination. I knew I couldn’t overcome the fear of public speaking by giving a Ted Talk in front of 1000 people. So I went to a small Toastmasters Club and gave an impromptu 90-second table topic speech.
The results were remarkable. When I started seeing a psychologist, still thinking I had a severe mental problem, he gave me interesting advice.
“The solution to what you’re experiencing is written on the paper (my fear list with proposed experiments and results to-date) you just showed me. Keep doing that. You had the answers this whole time.”
Challenging your thinking can take you to a higher level in your life. You can think your way out of whatever fearful situation is controlling your life.
The Reality of an Experience Is Whatever You Think It Is
Almost all of your problems are caused by your thinking. The fact you believe the world is the way it is creates your reality. If you think America is going through a dark period in its history then it certainly is. If you think the post-pandemic era is going to be a phenomenal comeback story then it will be.
There is always evidence to support both sides of any argument. The right side of an argument is whatever side you direct your mind towards.
I believe I create my reality. I also believe I consume reality on borrowed time.
I, now, start to wonder what lies beyond this reality. Do I get to see my 104-year-old grandma in a new reality when this one is over? Do I see my work colleague who died from stage 4 cancer recently in my dreams while I sleep at night, without me realizing it? It’s hard to say.
Reality is complex.
There are so many layers to your thinking. Pulling apart the layers of your thinking helps you deconstruct and then reconstruct your thinking as many times as you wish.
Your brain is a vinyl record. Your thoughts are a knife that can cut through anything. What if you took the knife and scratched the pattern printed on the vinyl record? Would it sound the same?
Reality is a series of patterns created by your thinking.
A Cheatsheet to Higher Thinking That Will Change Your Life
Start in no-phone fantasyland.
Staring at a dumb phone is the beginning of all mediocre thinking.
If you truly want to start the process of deep thinking then you’ve got to leave your phone in the daycare center of your top drawer, away from your thinking environment. How can you possibly think about anything with red notifications shooting ping pong balls of distraction at your mind?
A doughnut mind leaks life-changing solutions.
Rewire your self-image.
You will see how necessary our self-image is to our optimism, confidence and everyday success.
This is a quote Alex Mathers references from a book called “Psycho-Cybernetics.” How you see yourself matters. If you think you’re a fat, selfish, hoarder living in a garbage dump of a home, then you play the part of that character.
Your life is a story. You are the main character and write their script using your thinking.
What types of characters are there? How many different scripts are their? Limitless.
Your character has limitless ways it can act, think, react, talk, and live. Play around with your self-image. Picture yourself as many different selves over the course of your life — because you are.
In my teenage years, I played the part of a gamer hooked on soft drinks. In my early 20s, I played the part of a successful DJ. In my mid-20s I played the part of a rude, millionaire entrepreneur. In my early 30s, I played the part of a blogger. Now, in my mid-30s, I play lots of different parts all at the same time for fun — writer, thinker, experimenter, technologist, blockchain enthusiast, investor, teacher.
You don’t play the part of one person your entire life. Think like it.
Your habits reinforce a faulty program.
Content about habits is painfully bad. The idea of habits are pitched to you using gimmicks designed to make content creators money.
Habits are the automation your thinking runs on.
I don’t think to wake up. I don’t think to type my computer password. I don’t think to jump on a trampoline. These activities are automated. The problem with habits is you collect them without realizing you are. Your thoughts could be destroying your life because the automation is accidentally allowed to run.
The solution is rather simple: become aware of the automation running.
What do you do daily without thinking? Each thing is a habit. Often habits are thought of as airy-fairy stuff like meditation or deep breathing or cold showers or drinking a green smoothie. This is habit porn.
If we go deeper, habits are all the patterns in your life. The route you go to work is a pattern. The order you do things in the morning is a pattern. If something is wrong in your life then the programming is off. Habits allow a faulty program to boot up each morning.
If you want to access higher thinking, that produces change, then you have to stop reinforcing a bad program. You have to turn off each piece of automation that is messing your day up, and replace it with automation designed to reinforce the life you want.
If you think this is all nonsense then I have succeeded. The fact you’re starting to think, is everything.
New thoughts start with a tiny seed. Tiny seeds grow into a bamboo forest in your mind. Joe Dispenza summed it up beautifully:
Your mind can heal you.