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  • Writer's pictureParker Hewes

Undressing Your Inner Demons (Part 2)

Note: Read Part 1 before reading this article. This will make almost no sense if you don’t read the articles in order.

brain neurons glass brain

Ever since you were a little baby fetus, your brain has been taking in information from the environment. That's because only 3 weeks after inception, you start to develop a nervous system, and then after about 8 weeks, sensations like your sense of touch start forming.

pregnant belly pregnancy baby in womb

At first, your sensory environment consists of a dark, water-filled sack we call a womb (basically like a sensory deprivation/float tank). It's not exactly a riveting experience for your senses in there (hence the sensory deprivation analogy). But even inside a womb, your senses are susceptible to the sounds and movements of the outside world, which is why reading or playing music to your unborn child can influence its development.


As your senses develop inside the womb, your brain illuminates with activity and begins to expand and grow to process all the new information. Then, when you are born, this process continues. Your ears perk up to any sound you hear, and your eyes start to bounce around the room as your vision improves and brings more of your world into focus. Then you start grabbing, holding, shaking, and throwing anything you can get your hands on. You start trying to taste everything, too. All the while, neurons are firing left and right as they carry information from your ears, eyes, fingers, and mouth up into your brain.

Your brain keeps growing to deal with all your new experiences and sensations, but sometimes, these experiences turn sour. For example, your 1-year-old arm may have found a pencil and started shaking it, accidentally stabbing your forehead in the process. That playdough you were eating may have caused you to vomit. Or the dog you were petting maybe bit you on the hand.


Or maybe, instead of experiencing physical pain or injury, you were emotionally scarred in your younger years. You may have spilled a bowl of cereal all over the floor, and your sleep-deprived dad accidentally called you stupid or yelled really loudly.


Whether physical or emotional, all these experiences leave marks on your memories that can dramatically affect your future. And I'm not just talking about how an abusive upbringing may contribute to depression and anxiety in adulthood. Those would be more extreme examples. But those examples are useful representations of what I'm talking about. Even seemingly innocuous experiences (those that we tend to completely forget about) can imprint on your subconscious and affect the way you think, feel, and act.

Even seemingly innocuous experiences (those that we tend to completely forget about) can imprint on your subconscious and affect the way you think, feel, and act.
Mushu Demon Devil Scary Dragon

As I introduced in Part 1, this subconscious conditioning or programming is like a demon that can grow inside of you and hinder your ability to reach your goals.


To reiterate the main point of that article, the way to take control of your future and reach your goals is to undress those demons. In other words, you look into your past, expose the origins of your negative emotions (aka the birth of your demon), and rewrite your story (give your demon a makeover).


All of those words are just another way of saying that your past programming determines your outcomes. And if you’re struggling to achieve your goals and you want a better outcome, you’re gonna want to start by going deep into your history.

Secrets of the Millionaire Mind T Harv Eker

In the book, "Secrets of the Millionaire Mind," by T. Harv Eker, he describes it like this:

  • Your past programming determines your thoughts (or the way you think)

  • Your thoughts determine your emotions (because all emotion is rooted in your perception, or thought, about an experience)

  • Your emotions determine your actions (are you confident enough to take action? or are you too scared to act?)

  • And finally, your actions determine your outcomes.

To put it sequentially:


Past Programming ---> Thoughts ---> Emotions/Feelings ---> Actions = Outcomes/Results

Past Programming ---> Thoughts ---> Emotions/Feelings ---> Actions = Outcomes/Results

Since your past programming is the root of it all, that is where you start your journey to improve your outcomes. Instead of focusing on changing the fruit of the tree (the outcomes), focus on the roots. The fruits are an indicator of healthy roots, not the other way around.


In order to focus on the roots, you need to look back at your early stages of development. Of course, you won't be able to remember the entire history of experiences that programmed the behavior or outcome you are trying to change. But, you can at least try to find one or two examples. After all, one strand of fabric is all you need, because when you keep pulling on that strand, you’ll eventually unravel your demon's tightly knitted pantaloons.


demon in pants devil wearing pants

T. Harv Eker also provides a framework for analyzing your past experiences. He explains that there are just a few ways that your experiences will program/condition your mind: through verbal programming, modeling, and specific incidents (we'll discuss these in Part 3).


He also explains that your experiences don't have to be especially dramatic or memorable, they just have to have an element of negativity, harm, or carry some sort of message that contradicts your goals in the present day.


To explain further, he’s saying that if your experiences have grown into a demon, they will often start with a negative or harmful memory (something that generated fear, distrust, lack of confidence, pain, etc.). But, not all demons start this way. Sometimes, an experience can be helpful at the time (like a piece of advice, a rule of thumb, or a useful strategy to survive in the environment where you grew up), but at a different time or in a new place, these helpful tips become harmful to your success. For example, what was once a funny joke about rich people may have infiltrated your brain and turned into a way of thinking that holds you back from being a healthier, happier, or wealthier human.

Sometimes, an experience can be helpful at the time, (like a piece of advice, a rule of thumb, or a useful strategy to survive in the environment where you grew up) but at a different time or in a new place, these helpful tips become harmful to your success.

No matter the case, it is helpful to uncover as many of these experiences as possible (whether helpful or harmful at the time) so you can understand how you developed your current way of thinking. So, in part 3, we’ll dive deeper into each of the ways your experiences can program or condition your mind.


Stay tuned...

 
Parker Hewes Chiropractor Author American Ninja Warrior

Written by Parker Hewes, a chiropractor, author, American Ninja Warrior, and serial adventurer living in Salt Lake City, Utah. Parker believes learning and growing are the keys to living a full life. He started Getting Gooder to help others learn and grow, so they can create the happiest, healthiest, and wealthiest lives imaginable.

Parker also knows that our ideal life gets even better when we have others to share it with. So, keep following Parker and the Getting Gooder community as we build our ideal, together.

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