Teaching an Old Brain New Tricks

Old Dog, New Tricks?

This is week 4 of an 8-week program to dial my wakeup time down to 5:00 a.m. Yeah, you heard me: 5:00 a.m. In the course of my life I have stayed-up more often than gotten-up to that hour.

Here’s the biggest surprise: it’s easy. Within ten-minutes of rising, I am awake and engaged. It used to take a good hour to clear the fog after reluctantly rising much later. Here’s what I’ve discovered…

By leveraging my brain’s innate laziness, it applies its massive capability to making the task easier. THIS IS MAJOR!!! Our brain is lazy! It seeks the easiest route to any goal we give it. We have a super-processor between our ears that wants to make our life easy. Who knew?!

Give the brain leeway, brain takes it. No leeway, brain cuts to the chase. Here is what I’m learning about our lazy brain:

  • If we give our brain the luxury of time to complete a task, it will fill it. Since limiting my sleep to 8 hours, my brain has become more efficient at sleeping. My fitness tracker shows my sleep efficiency consistently above 90%. When I gave myself 9 or more hours in bed because “I was tired” or “needed the sleep,” my fitness tracker showed sleep efficiency in the 80 percent range. Either way, my brain makes sure it gets the sleep it needs, not more, not less. The same is true with my meditation practice: I am experiencing a far more efficient 5-minute daily mediation than the 30-minutes of mind-wrestling I used to do.

About your goal: How can you create hard constraints so your brain is forced into maximum efficiency?

  • If we give our brain a choice, it will convince us of the easier option. When my alarm goes off, I don’t ask my brain if it’s ready to get up; I get up. I no longer check-in, or ask my brain if it’s ready to get up, or review the flexibility of my morning obligations. I have taken away the option of staying in bed by putting the alarm across the room. The brain is a good soldier, rallying to the command we give it. If there is any wiggle room or wishi-washiness in the command, the brain defaults to the easier option: stay in bed, don’t exercise, eat junk.

About your goal: What “escape routes” do you need to eliminate?

  • The brain can use its massive capability either for or against us. When we try to “make ourselves” do things, or motivate our brain by reason, the brain advocates for the easier route. This sets up a fight between it and us, an exhausting struggle that it eventually wins. When we give the brain no other option but to tow the line, it turns its massive problem-solving capability to making it easier. That’s the trick! The brain is like a very clever, lazy child. It seeks pleasure and ease. Why fight it?

About your goal: What internal battles can you surrender?

Think what this means for your goals! With just a little re-programming, you can enlist the power of the world’s most powerful super-processor in the manifestation of your dreams! Don’t delay. The world needs the gifts you came to bring. Click here for my “Lazy Brain Goal Sheet” to get you started.

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