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Independence from Tyranny

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Independence from Tyranny
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This may seem like an overly dramatic way to describe an everyday experience, but in the strictest sense, it’s true.  Generally speaking, most of us are ruled by our habits, not conscious intentions, and that puts us in positions not of our own choice.  If everything we did was a result of conscious, intentional choice, our lives would be quite different. 

This isn’t to say that shifting our way of being in the world is as easy as flipping a switch.  Even when we do our best to remain conscious, we find ourselves doing or saying things we didn’t mean to, and far more insidious; we interpret what we’re seeing or hearing through unconscious filters.  Those interpretations complicate our lives immeasurably.  This is primarily because we don’t see that we’re interpreting, we think we’re just taking in the world around us “objectively.”  That level of functional unconsciousness is what habits are all about.

We wouldn’t be able to function effectively without habits, so this issue isn’t as simple as “good/bad.”  We need to look at what’s working for us or not in our lives.  Then we need to look at where habits are playing a role, and deal with them appropriately.  If we look at what we’ve read, studied, and learned about how to succeed in business, and we’re not taking the actions we need to take, why is that?  What are we doing instead?  Why are we doing that?  This is why it’s so important to review this dynamic.  If we’re being held back, away from success, and away from happiness, isn’t that a kind of tyranny; a form of oppression by our own habits?  And aren’t we the kind of people who rebel against tyranny and oppression?

If we’re going to rebel against our habits, and embrace our right to choose intentional actions, where do we start?  Habits are so strong that merely going up against them is almost sure to fail.  Those failures become part of our internal narrative, habits gain momentum, and the battle gets even more difficult.  We need to recognize that going head-to-head against habits doesn’t work. That’s not to say we can’t win; merely that going against habits head-to-head isn’t our smartest choice.  Fighting against our own momentum makes things much more difficult than they need to be.

Offer Yourself an Alternative
I recently did a talk about shifting our habits and used a visualization that I think would be helpful here.  Imagine a football player running downfield.  If you wanted to stop him, you’d need to exert an opposing force, and that would be a painful lesson in momentum.  It’s much easier to push him sideways, out of bounds.  Now imagine that you’re that football player, and your habit is to run the wrong direction, or at least in a direction that doesn’t advance your goals.  Stopping you is going to be difficult, whereas shifting your direction is going to have a much better chance for success.

If a child wants a snack, and is going for a nutritionally empty, sugary thing, telling her she can’t have it will usually make her want it more.  Offering her something delicious and good for her instead has a higher chance of working.

Shifting directions is a matter of creating new neural paths in your brain to replace the existing paths.  Instead of “don’t think of a pink elephant,” which immediately conjures that image, we need a replacement: “think of a blue hippo.”  Rather than breaking a bad habit head on, we can learn a good habit to replace it.

I mentioned earlier that some of our most insidious habits are how we interpret incoming information.  Those interpretations can get in the way of learning new things, and it becomes twice as difficult to install a new habit.  This is why we first need to learn how to re-wire our habits associated with our interpretations and our perceptions. When we attempt new processes or new ways of doing things without first changing how we think about them, we encounter tons of resistance, which usually wins out, and we find ourselves back to our old habits in no time.  Re-wiring our brains, so that we’re more receptive to the new processes gets us far better results.

The process for re-wiring is not difficult, but it does require tenacity.  If you’ve ever memorized the words to a song, you have the skills needed.  The place where a coach makes all the difference is in helping you identify the habits that aren’t serving you, helping develop what replacement habits need to be installed, coaching you through the installation process, and keeping you on track until they are indeed habits


Special Offer - Independence from Tyranny
July 4th is the USA's celebration of getting out from under rule without representation. As we fight for the right to live by our own choices, we forget that Habits have become our new dictators. The battle is far from over. To support you in your struggle for independence, I want to make you a Special Offer

3 Dynamic Discovery Sessions to three lucky people (who haven't already gotten them) just for including the secret word in the subject line of your email: "Jefferson"

Discover your Operating System and  how that gives you resources and alerts you to challenges, so you can be every bit as incredible as you were meant to be.

Click to Schedule.

Each session is a $250.00 value, and will be worth much more to you in life-changing ways.  Good luck!


Quick Communication Tip


I call the process I use for re-wiring habits RARE, because it stands for Recognize, Arrest, Replace, and Evolve. This is a tried and true process that anyone can use to effectively replace ill-serving habits, behaviors, or interpretations with new ones that will serve you better.

The first step is conscious awareness. We need to be able to Recognize when we're about to engage in the old habit. This is usually accomplished through somatic awareness, which is another highly useful skill to learn. The next step is to Arrest that habit or behavior before we engage in it. This is often called a "pattern interrupt." The next step becomes that much more important, because at this stage, we're basically standing poised on one foot. Nature abhors a void, so we need to Replace that old habit with a new one. Establishing that Replacement habit is one of the more creative aspects of good coaching.

The last letter is for Evolve, because over time (usually between 21 and 28 days) we will have successfully re-wired our brain from the old habit to the new habit, and from a way of being or communicating that didn't serve us, to one that does serve us.

Want to learn more about how your communication can hold you back or catapult you forward?  Come visit the web site, or better yet, contact me and see how we can design a program to fit your needs and desired outcomes.


Resource Links:

Conscious Communication - the podcast series

KG Stiles: "Conversations that Enlighten and Heal"
Ian Blei on Kind Ambition and the
Integram (TM)

Kind Ambition - 2nd Edition

Got Blog? c
ome visit the Blog.

Character Driven - Ever want to create characters that were so believable, that people forgot they were characters?



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The Optimizer
Ian Blei,
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