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Who's In Charge You Or Your Brain
Neuroscientists have now discovered that between 95-99% of what we think is unconscious. I would strongly suggest at this point if you haven’t already see the video How the Brain Works than I suggest that you do as it may help to clarify some of the comments made in this article.
When we understand how our brains work we know that with every thought there is a corresponding behaviour or reaction. So what are the implications if the majority of our thinking is out of our awareness?
Maybe like me you are thinking this means that the majority of our behaviours and reactions are not only automatic but are preprogramed by pour brains. Added to this we have no idea of why we sometimes behave the way we do. Well the good news is now you know why you sometimes behave in ways that are unproductive to yourself and others. At the base of all your behaviours are a bunch of thoughts. Now before we move onto what we can do about this let’s take a moment to look at the implications to teaching and education that this can have.
If the majority of your behaviours are unconscious and consist of a lifetime of thinking both good and bad how might this affect your teaching and interaction with your students. Before continuing let me share an interesting study they did in USA some years ago. Researchers in the study followed around for an entire day 100 school children and monitored the number of positive and negative comments they received. The results where 694 negative comments to 72 positive comments. What this shows us is that we are conditioned from an early age to think more in negative terms than positive ones. To test this theory think about what happens when you get out of bed of a morning do you say to yourself wow this is going to be fantastic day and I know everything is going to be just perfect. Or do you think I better hurry up or I will be late for work or I wonder if I am going to get stuck in traffic again or I just bet X is going to give me a hard time today or Oh no I have to attend that meeting don’t really have the time and I am not prepared. I could go on but I will spare you the drama. If we are truly honest with ourselves most of what we think is more in terms of negative outcomes rather than positive ones.
So the real question is what are you bringing into your everyday environment and how is this impacting on the people around you? If again we are truly honest with ourselves then we will start to realise and understand that the majority of our interactions are not based in the present moment but in the past and that past is shaped by negative influences. Now if we take this down a notch even further and start to reflect on problematic people in our lives we would see that sitting behind those interactions are thoughts and beliefs that have negative based thinking. To test this out now compare the thoughts about people that you don’t have issues with and ask yourself are the thoughts and beliefs positive. Why is it that we have positive thoughts towards some people and negative thoughts towards others? Yep you guessed correctly it is all part of that 95-99% of thinking that is unconscious to us and to add insult to injury it is a by-product of our past experiences.
So ask yourself how many may be adversely affected by the fact that you are unaware of the majority of your thoughts and beliefs? More importantly are you prepared to do something about it? It is important to realise that it isn’t personal you are not a bad person because your brains has been conditioned to behave and react in less than perfect terms. In fact it is quite liberating to know that it is just a fact of life and the way your brain is built that we all behave in less than productive ways. It has nothing to do with you as a person but the way that you brain works and the less than perfect environment we live in.
What is a measure of your character is whether you are prepared to do something about it. Do you want to take back control of driving the bus or will you continue to let your programmed brain run rampant?
Here are a list of suggestions for taking back control.