Friday, May 01, 2009

* Take Charge of Your Mind by John Selby

A short little book that can be condensed into a short little paragraph to obtain 95% of the benefit. How you say? Well it turns out that brain of yours is not able to multi-task very well at all. But this defect is really a feature if you know what do to with it. By focusing your mind on 2 sensory inputs at the same time, you can effectively overwhelm it – and block all other thoughts – including those that stress you out. And how do you focus on 2 sensory inputs. Easy, just focus on the air flowing in and out of your nose as you breath, and also focus on your stomach/chest moving in and out with each breath. That’s it! Amazing, now that you’ve found your chi or your chakra or whatever – just relax and live in the moment.


See videos on the meditative techniques:


Want to get promoted? Stop being angry at work

You have a wide variety of possible mind states, each one involving a particular combination of thoughts, perceptions, memories, and imaginings. Your angry mind states are generated when you fixate on a present conflict or dwell on an unresolved past conflict. This mind state makes your body respond with aggressive tensions as your heartbeat increases and your breathing tightens. If you want to shift out of this angry mood, what can you do? You must take charge of your thoughts, shift away the memories that are provoking the angry emotion, and turn your attention in more productive directions. Especially at work, staying stuck in such a negative mood is going to damage your success as well as your health. P45


Breath in, breath out

We’ve found that the most powerful action you can take to instantly shift your focus of attention into the present moment is to say to yourself “I feel the air flowing in and out of my nose”, and allow these words to turn your attention to exactly what you’ve pointed toward – your breathing. P49


Is that why I can't rub my head and pat my stomach at the same time?

This shift in mental focus dissolves worried and angry thoughts because, as cognitive science has demonstrated, we can’t focus on thoughts about the past and the future and at the same time experience two or more sensations in the body in the present moment. P50


Pay attention to your heart. No, not the one that pumps the blood.

Most people find that when they first tune in to the feelings in their hearts, there’s not much feeling there at all… It’s definitely wise to deal with whatever numb or negative feelings you find when you say “I’m aware of the feelings in my heart.” Cognitive studies have shown that just through the act of regularly pausing and turning your mind’s attention to your heart, you stimulate a sense of relaxation, expansion and warmth, and the inflow of good feelings into your heart. When you heart feels temporarily overwhelmed with angry or cold emotions, you encourage the inflow of positive feelings by recalling the love you feel for someone in your life. As you feel warmth, acceptance and love in your heart for that person, you’ll find that your breathing deepens and you come more alive in the present moment. P53


Cognitive research has shown that your mind will quite willingly respond and do what you tell it to do – but you must first state your intent and employ a carefully selected phase that will predictably provoke the desired inner response. P63


Thinking is not doing

You must say – not necessarily out load – but using the speech center and vocal chords to vocalize. Just thinking the words, will cause almost nothing to happen. Thinking happens in the mind, but speech requires the body. Your power of intent is greatly increased when you move from thinking to speaking. P65


Proof that we can’t multitask

Studies at the NIH have shown that you can’t continue with a logical stream of thought and at the same time focus your attention on two or more sensory experiences. P68


And that’s why music calms the beast inside us

Have you wondered why listening to music transports you outside your usual thoughts and feelings? When you focus on 2 or more harmonies in music, psychologically you are in effect short circuiting your chronic thought flows, entering a state where your thoughts are quiet. P68


What!?!?! You mean I wasted 10 years in an ashram giving up all of my worldly possessions for something I could have learned in 2 just weeks? Oh shit, I’m not supposed to be upset anymore. Breath in, breath out…

Traditional meditative quiet mind techniques often take 10 years to master rather than 2 weeks. But by focusing one’s attention on 2 different sensory inputs at the same time, you can quiet your thoughts immediately. P68


Your brain responds and reacts physically to one of two primary emotions: fear or peace. When you’re afraid, tension grips the muscles of your skull and neck. Conversely when you’re at peace, your scalp muscle relax and you feel a warm sensation envelop you. P89


Its either one or the other, but never both

The brain is wired in such a way that we can’t simultaneously be busy judging and feel compassion. They are incompatible. Furthermore, we can’t enjoy sensory pleasures until we take a break from judging. Judging also separates us from what we’re experiencing. When we judge, we hold back and don’t commit. Judgment after all is rooted in the fear function of the mind. We are apprehensive and suspect that something bad might happen if we arent’ constantly careful. So letting go of judgment is another way of letting go of anxiety. P110


It must be quiet before the storm

What we do know from brain scan research is that we tend to use a limited portion of our mind when deductively thinking, but when we become momentarily quiet and then have flashes of insight pop into our mind, a much large portion of the brain is being used, including the right brain. P146


What makes us wise

Wise individuals tend to be grounded in their own bodies, tuned into the present. They are less fearful, by having learned to release anxiety and worries. They are not judgmental, but feel compassion. They are open to receive new information and ideas. And they know how and when to act – and not to act. P164


The half full crowd has got it going on

There is strong evidence that optimistic people are more successful and healthier. Optimistic insurance agents in the top 25% of an optimistic psychology test sold twice as much as those in the bottom 25%, who were also twice as likely to resign… A Harvard study of 1300 men revealed that men who labeled themselves as optimistic had ½ the incidence of heart disease of those that didn’t. p236


Believe in yourself

Perceived self efficacy refers to the beliefs in one’s capabilities to organize and execute the courses of action required to produce given attainments. And research has shown that individuals who are high in self efficacy achieve higher levels of job satisfaction and performance. And high self efficacy is correlated to stress reduction. P240




1 comment:

viagra online said...

Wow I'm a multi task person, but I never make a search of how it works, but sound very interesting I already watch some MRI imagenes when the brain it's working in many things at the same time but seems to use more brain capacity when it's doing nothing, beccause like I'm hiperactive, still works.
Thanks for sharing, nice post.