Published on August 5th, 2013 | by Jason Goldberg
Give your mind the finger, literally! – How to get unstuck from the past AND the future.
Hey all you MEometrists!
This is Jason Goldberg and YOU are watching MEometryTV, THE place to be to yearn more, learn more and earn more from your life and business.
So my wife Alicia and I regularly have really cool deep convos and a recent one of them is the inspiration for today’s video. She was dealing with some stuff and while we were talking through it, we both had what we think is a pretty cool realization about how our focus affects our stress.
Let me explain. We realized that anytime she gets stressed, she tends to dwell in the past. For example, if, in the past, she had been wronged by a friend she trusted, she would focus on being wronged (as if it was happening right now) and may decide that trusting again will lead to betrayal or hurt. Dragging these beliefs forward or any other past junk like setbacks, failures or disappointments can infect your brain and cause you the same level of discomfort, pain and a whole host of other emotions that it did back then. And that, many times, ends up creating a self-fulfilling prophecy, stifling your growth and your happiness.
The past is like a photo.
You could take out a photo from 20+ years ago and probably be transported back almost immediately to that moment and feel the same emotions NOW that you were feeling when that photo was taken. Smiling, laughing, heart racing, sadness, comfort, regret, love, all kinds of stuff can come up. We all love to reminisce don’t we?
Where the issue arises, and what we found happening with Alicia, is when you get stuck in the moment in the photo, and feel that everything that happened THEN, both emotionally and physically, is happening now. Rationally of course, you know that is not the case. But as most of us know, our minds eat our rationality for breakfast. It is vital to remember that the photo was a snapshot in time and though you have the conceptual memories of THAT PAST, it is no longer your reality NOW.
That was a great realization and awareness for her but as a bonus, we also discovered that when I am stressed, I am future-focused. But not in the conventional “goals-based” way. I bring the FEARS of POSSIBLE failures, uncertainty, what others will think of me, what-ifs and crazy scenarios into the NOW as if they have already happened! For example, if I think that my last MEometry TV episode video was really good and there is no way that my next video can be better, I may use the present moment to start projecting out into the future that people won’t watch anymore or that I will be a failure and have to give up my dream to impact people lives. Just like with Alicia’s scenario, this can, in turn create a REAL reality that prevents me from leaving my comfort zone and experimenting which may lead to me NOT being able to impact people’s lives like I want to. Another self-fulfilling prophecy created by my own resistance.
See, the future is like a painting.
It hasn’t happened, so no photo to hold in your hand but the same principle applies. Let’s say an artist paints a picture of your goals 20+ years from now. They paint a picture of your house, your car, your kids, your dog and any number of things that they and you have no REAL clue about how they will appear so far into the future. Would you look at that painting and say, oh my gosh, the house the artist painted is HUGE, what if I can’t buy a house that big and people think I’m a failure, what if I DO get the house but I can’t really afford it and I lose it and end up not living up to everyone’s expectations or any number of other irrational fears, doubts and insecurities. The point to remember here is that the artist’s rendering represents the CONCEPT of the future, what it could be, not what it has to be and DEFINITELY not the reality of your life present moment.
Our brains are smart, but they aren’t THAT smart.
We can easily convince ourselves that the real stresses from our PAST or the potential stresses in our FUTURE represent our TRUE CURRENT REALITY, but then our minds won’t know the difference between PAST and PRESENT or PRESENT and FUTURE and will start to act accordingly, many times to our detriment.
The common thread is that whether you get past paralyzed like Alicia or future focused like me, you are dealing in CONCEPTUAL time but treating as if it’s REAL TIME. Listen to me carefully here: The past and the future are both CONCEPTS and NEITHER of them ACTUALLY exist right now! I’m going to say that again to make sure you got me: The past and the future are both CONCEPTS and NEITHER of them ACTUALLY exist right now! I just got pretty deep right? You are probably wondering if I just came back from a meditation retreat in Bali and while those both sound pretty cool to me that is not the case.
While Alicia and I were discussing this notion of this REAL time vs. BRAIN (or conceptual) time, we came up with an interesting physical reminder of how to keep the timeline straight. It’s something out of quantum leap or back to the future (two of my favorite series btw) and it involves, as you may have guessed from the title of this video…your finger…or in this case, mine.
(you will have to be watching the video for this part):
Here is the past…where the fears, insecurities and doubts live. And here is your present, where you can decide how you will think, what you believe and what actions you will take. Look at the MASSIVE separation between the past and the present. Though it may only look like a few inches, I can assure it is a distance of light years! If you keep the finger straight, it’s pretty easy to see that there is absolutely NO correlation between your past and your present. While they are on the same plane, they are NOWHERE near each other! Awesome right…But here is what most of us do in a sense. We bend our finger so that our past and our present are touching. Now there is no gap between the past and the present, they are occupying the same space, your mind can’t tell the difference and now the issues from the past have easy access to your present day self. Potentially disastrous.
The exact same thing happens with the present and the future. Here is your present and here is your future. Light years a part, no way the concept of the future can affect or infect the reality of the present…UNLESS you bend it like Beckham or cross the streams or whatever you want to call it and all heck breaks loose.
The next time you are feeling stuck, give yourself the finger…you know what I mean…and remind yourself of the true separation that exists between the present moment (the only thing you really have control over) and the concepts of the past and the future. If nothing else, it can force you to quickly remember that you are in the present moment and break you out of being stuck in the past or future long enough to remember the concepts we talked about today. It is really helping Alicia and I when we are feeling not so fresh upstairs and I hope it can do the same for you.
Now as you know, we yearn, learn and earn exponentially more when we share our gifts with each other.
I want to hear from you, so leave a comment below let us know if you tend to be more “past paralyzed” or “future focused”. I’d also love to hear any other ways you have worked at getting unstuck, we can never have enough tools at our disposal to live our ideal lives.
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