Bad Habits

Sir Isaac Newton was day dreaming one day when nature literally struck him with perhaps one of the most important ideas of our time. And I’m sure its happened to you too. You have been trying to decide on the perfect gift for a loved one for a long time then, one day you’re in the shower and you get the perfect idea. These seemingly spontaneous discovers often get labeled as lucky or God sent. But what if there is more to it than that?

Let’s think about this. At any given moment in time, we have two options: We can focus on everything that is happening around us – the moment – or we can be thinking about something else – having a conversation with the voice in our head. For anyone who has ever missed their freeway exit because they were thinking, “I wonder how many pears should I buy at the grocery store tomorrow…” you know what it’s like to get caught up thinking. But what about the times when you’re not thinking anything at all. You hear the leaves of the trees around you rustling against one another with a bird chirping over head and the distant sound of a car driving by. And then, like a bolt of lightning, you realize exactly what gift you should get for best friend’s birthday. Why is it that we make mistakes when thinking of the simplest things and yet seem to solve the most complex of problems when we aren’t thinking at all?

In any given moment, we have the choice to think about something or to let ourselves be. We use conscious thinking -the voice in our head – in order to build ideas, create things, and solve problems linearly. But when we are letting ourselves be in the moment, we are allowing the unconscious mind to take over – the same one responsible for blinking your eyes when something flies at you. Now science tells us that we only really consciously use about 10% of our brain power, so what happened to that other 90%? Could it be that there, outside of our awareness, our greatest personal problems are being solved for us without our knowing? Could it be that there is a greater universal intelligence behind the curtain? I mean, we share something like 99% of our DNA with chimps and that 1% difference is responsible for the fact that we have skyscrapers, motion sensors, and governments? I don’t know about you, but I choose to believe there’s more to it all.

THE TAKEAWAY: It is really really easy to shut yourself off from the creative energy inside you… It’s a bad habit really. It is a natural tendency of human beings to habituate to things. This is what allows us to build on what we already have, but it also is the reason that if you ate your favorite food for dinner everyday eventually you’d hate it. And its the reason that well over half of marriages fail. Have you ever noticed a building you’ve passed on your way to work everyday, for years, and yet you have never noticed it before? If so, think about all the other things you didn’t see, and all the other spontaneous problems that could have been solved. Problems that could have been solved if you were only paying more attention to the moment, and less to the voice in your head. Instead of allowing bad habits to persist, let’s form a good one together. Let’s make it a goal to live in the moment as much as possible, from now on, and see where the universe will guide us. And I promise you, next time, you won’t miss your exit.

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