Our brains are designed to keep us alive, to keep us from doing things uncomfortable and dangerous, uncertain, difficult or scary.
Our minds are designed to do things that won’t hurt you. The scientific name for this? The spotlight affect; our brain magnifies the risks of anything that could be perceived to be a problem.
This is exactly why my mind was telling me for months not to travel; and so YES MOM, I understand why you want me back in the U.S!
It is completely normal for our brains to want to protect us and our loved ones from doing exactly what I am doing; leaving safety and security and living day to day with an abundance of unknowns.
Before leaving Indonesia, my mom (sorry for bringing you up again, love you!) sent me a list of all of the dangers of Bali: Deadly mosquitos, rip currents, tattoo parlors, killer monkeys and killer men (pictured below)…to name a few! What if I got bitten by a mosquito and got malaria, who would take care of me? What if I got my phone and wallet stolen, how would I pay for a place to spend the night? What if I was out, alone at night, how would I get back safely as a woman? While all (mostly) real and valid potential dangers, these questions could keep someone from ever leaving the comfort of their bedroom, let alone the country. Thanks brain.
Well now that I am traveling…I am telling you from firsthand experience that you can beat your brain today, even with the little things (for me, such as posting this BLOG post that I have been putting off.)
Trapped in the knowledge action gap, we know what we want to do, but we can’t make the step to do it. First step? Get clear on what you desire to take action on.
Here are some things I want to take action on:
Write, write, write, share my journey
Find myself a consistent income
Continue learning myself and traveling the world
Teach (yoga, english, self love, nutrition, just TEACH)
Support victims of Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma
Eat healthier and more mindfully
Be present (in moment)
The trick is closing the gap between the knowledge and the action. I write down my desires everyday, because this is a consistent practice, knowing what you want to take action on before starting it. I would be lying if I said this was easy all the time; my friends have gotten the phone call once or twice of me telling them I’m flying back to the US. How do I keep living my ideal life even after several months?
I consistently am reminding myself that “my brain is my bitch” (thank you Jen Sincero) and that anything is possible when you become aware of the coping mechanisms of your brain telling you what you can’t do.
Motivation is garbage. Its never there when you need it. Tell yourself:
I am going to beat my brain today.
Develop the skill to hear inner intention.
How do you go from knowledge to action?
If you don’t move within 5 seconds, idea to action before brain kicks in to full gear and sabotage.
If you need some encouragement, Mel Robbins explains this much more eloquently than me:
It’s your job to learn how to move into those ideas that can change everything.
When you learn that you have the chance to go from autopilot to decision maker, you will be unstoppable.
We all know what to, none of us know how to make the decisions to make change. Now that you know this, just go start.
Whether it is to make the decision to buy a flight to go travel or to finally do the dishes, get out of bed on time, exercise, eat healthier or apply for the new job, make your brain your bitch and go do it because its most likely never not going to be scary, tedious, difficult or uncomfortable. And you will fail, over and over again, but it makes the successes that much more valuable (and life that much more worth living).