Changing a behaviour is no easy feat, it takes time, dedication and motivation! According to Robin Sharma, renowned author and international change maker, it takes 66 days for a behaviour change to be automated. And I have tried and tested it, and YES it does work.
I have never been an early riser, like most, snoozing the alarm runs on automation daily. I was never consistent in practicing my yoga in the mornings. My mind wanted to make the change of getting up and practice, however the body has a mind of its own and that usually supersedes the mind. But doesn’t the mind controls every aspect of our being, hence the phrase mind over body. And so I thought.
I have been reading quite abit lately, to widen my perspective and of course gain knowledge. Knowledge is power after all. What is astonishing in most of my reads is that the mind does not just work on its own, another part of our body that is closely connected to our brain is our hearts. Thats right! our fist size heart. The heart has 40 000 neurons, making its electro magnetic field 60 times larger and 5000 times more intense than the brain! This means the heart is more intelligent than we initially thought it is. Lets hold our thoughts of the heart for later.
Back to the brain, for the mind to control the body, we need to train it first, training it is not that challenging as it sounds. It is all about repetition, reminding ourselves, being consistent and determined. We can do that in a variety of ways:
- Journalling your plan for the next day
- Mindfulness practice
- Reminding yourself by pasting post its around your room
- Surround yourself with like minded people
Repetition works not only on the conscious level but the subconscious level too, which makes the change more sustainable. Similar to how athletes train for competitions, train, train, repeat, repeat 8 hours a day, 7 days a week. They are not only training physically but mentally as well. Dr Joe Dispenza explains in his book: Becoming Supernatural, to reach a goal, one has to live the present in a way they have already reached their goal. This is one technique we use to mentally train ourselves. Thats how athletes train too, training hard and living like the medal is already theirs. But there is more than meets the eye.
So where does the heart fits in this equation? As mentioned earlier the heart’s electro magnetic field is 60 000 times bigger than the brain. Imagine thinking of what to have for dinner, succulent vegan burger perhaps…now add some emotions to that thought, like the immense joy you feel on the first bite into the burger. Another example, think of an ideal beach vacation, sipping some pina colada while on a lazy chair and hearing the sounds of waves crashing on the beach. Now add a sense of calmness and gratitude, feel how that thought suddenly magnifies. The heart is connected to emotions and when we add positive emotions to our thoughts or intentions, that thought and intention magnifies and it makes the process whole lot easier. Apart from training hard physically and mentally thinking they have already won the medal, athletes put in a lot of emotions into their training, placing them on top of their game
Same concept can be used to change our behaviours too. Back to my earlier paragraph, I had a tough time getting up in the morning for my yoga practice. Using just my mind to convince was tough, however when i added emotions to it, like how much i will enjoy the practice in peace while everyone else is still sleeping, made a lot of difference. It is the same with blogging, I had put off this article for 3 weeks though it has been in my mind. The ingredient that changed from procrastination to getting it done is …yeap you guessed it! Emotions! How much i enjoy penning down my thoughts and how this will help others.
So remember next time you would like to set a goal or intention, add the secret ingredients….lots of love, joy, happiness, gratitude and feel the change take place with ease.