I sent a text to a friend about an event for which she declined. I found myself saying “I hope you’ll change your mind.” Then it hit me. What a common phrase, yet we use it without really grasping how powerful it is. According to neuroscience we can literally change our minds. It’s called neuroplasticity. Turns out we can also change each others’ minds and DNA through positive conversations. I mean this literally, not figuratively, it's called epigenics.
When we have an inspiring conversation the hug hormone, oxytocin is released in our brains. It’s good for our minds and our health. The same is true with negative or toxic conversations wherein the stress hormone cortisol is released, wreaking havoc on our central nervous system. It is then that our minds shut down sending us into fight, flight, freeze or appease mode. We also lose access to the prefrontal cortex, our executive decision making part of the brain. Simply put, we perspective and connection.
Most of our minds are running on default settings based on years and years of unconscious programming through families, cultures, societies, religions, experiences and feelings. When we interrupt our default thinking we can literally change our minds and we can choose connection. We all have mindsets and we can change those too. We can unlearn and relearn if we’re conscious and willing to be out of our comfort zones. It takes work and it takes mindfulness and the willingness to challenge just about everything.
Imagine if we all challenged our beliefs, biases, programming and the BS (belief systems) to really change our minds - think of the kind of world we could co-create. One of the easiest ways to do this is to hit the pause button. Pausing inserts a bug in the program and allows us to be responsive verses the reacting from default settings. The more we do this old neural networks loose their strength and new networks are created. Suddenly we’ve literally changed our minds.
So the question becomes whose running the show you or your mind. Think about that the next time someone asks if you will change your mind. What do you spend your days thinking about? What thoughts get most of your attention? Start noticing your thoughts, become mindful. Hit the pause button and reject, eject or rewrite the file. You get to choose. And besides, left brain is a LIAR.