Saturday, January 24, 2009

the work of unwiring

In my last post, I touched on the idea of needing to unwire our core beliefs (the false ones) in order to change negative behaviors and move in the direction of positive growth. In the comments section, Nina from http://www.naturallynina.blogspot.com/ , asked how we can unwire these false core beliefs. I don't profess to have all the answers, but I do have a few thoughts on this question:

First, unwiring deep-rooted core beliefs takes a lot of work...work that can be difficult and uncomfortable, so it is imperative to be committed to doing the work. The first step of this work is awareness...figuring out exactly what our false core beliefs are. Most people, but not all, will need the help of a counselor in order to begin digging into the past (as typically our core beliefs are established in the early years of our lives) to get to these core beliefs. Keeping in mind, those areas of our lives in which we struggle most are indicators of where we should begin investigating our past to find the core beliefs.

To build on the example in the previous post of a woman who struggles with relationships and love. She would need to go back and begin exploring the messages she received about love as a child. Did she feel unconditional love from her parents? What sort of positive (or negative) role models did she grow up around? What was her relationship like with her father? Answering these questions, honestly, can help her begin becoming aware of what her core beliefs about love and her ability to be loved are.

Once we honestly figure out exactly what our negative core beliefs are, then we are ready to begin the perhaps even more difficult work of the unwiring. Once again, talk therapy can be very useful in this process (as is the practice of yoga), or at least speeding the process along. However, some additional steps to the work of unwiring would include, first, noticing when the tape recorder of the irrational thought is playing in our head. Second, replacing that thought with a truthful one. For example:

Irrational thought: "I don't deserve a loving, fulfilling relationship."
Replacement: "I am worthy of a loving, fulfilling relationship."

This is an exercise that is even more beneficial if we write the rational thought, or positive affirmation, multiple times per day. I suggest even posting in around the house, on the refrigerator, bathroom mirror, put it in a picture frame your bed, so you will be reminded of it regularly. This begins the unwiring/rewiring process.

However, to really begin rewiring the brain, we have to take action, or micromovements (a term coined by SARK) to begin to prove to ourselves that our replacement belief is truth. Keeping in mind, as I wrote in the last post, we often get pleasure from proving our irrational beliefs to ourselves. So, it might even be a little uncomfortable beginning to try to prove our new replacement beliefs. It is by working through this discomfort that change and growth occur.

What might a micromovement (remember this is ACTION) look like from the example above? I might join an on-line dating service. I might ask an acquaintance I've had a secret crush on to go out on a date. I might prove to myself that I am worthy of love by scheduling some self-care time.

This is obviously a quite complicated process, but definitely do-able and worth the work. No matter what, each moment, each thought, each action we have is creating our life. We can create from a place of irrational, negative thoughts or from a place of truth. The choice is ours.

I'd love to hear if others have ideas on how to do the work of unwiring and rewiring. Feel free to join in with your thoughts and comments.

Here is your yogathought for the day:

"When the practitioner is firmly established in the practice of the truth, his words become so potent that whatever he says come to realization." --Yoga Sutras

Namaste'
Yogadiva

1 comment:

naturally nina said...

What a fantastic post! Thanks so much for answering my question and providing such thoughtful ideas. It really does make sense when you explain it that way, so thanks again!! I love this blog!