ABOUT THE CONTRIBUTOR

Christine McKee
Christine McKee Christine McKee, a registered psychologist, is director of BE Institute, a psychology consulting and training organisation in Brisbane, Australia. She uses a combination of eastern philosophy and modern psychological techniques with her clients in the corporate, private practice, mining, government, and not-for-profit arenas. The 4-phase BE by Design process results in personal empowerment for individuals, maximising potential of leaders and their teams to achieve business excellence and conscious parenting (pre and post conception). Christine is published author of BE by Design: How I BE Is Up to Me, an empowering “owner’s manual for the brain” which will guide you to understand your most precious asset and how, through simple and practical strategies, you can be the best you can BE. Christine also writes regularly for several online journals.

Christine McKee has written 14 article(s) for us.

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Short Cuts To Thinking Fresh

October 22, 2012 | Christine McKee

Train your brain to use short cuts so you can move forward faster with achieving your business goals.
Train your brain to use short cuts so you can move forward faster with achieving your business goals.

Your brain is the most magnificent thing you will ever own, and you do own it! You can be in control of it every conscious moment, with the aid of a few simple tips. To start with though, let’s talk about why we are creatures of habit.

Basically, we allow our brains to adopt some efficient strategies for taking shortcuts when drawing conclusions about what events, experiences, interactions, and relationships with different people in our lives mean. Ever notice how in your adult life you do so many tasks and react to people in your life in set ways? For example you drive, eat, get dressed, shower, answer phone calls, and talk to your partner/parents/kids in an automatic way. Also notice how once you have had an interaction or two with an individual you have ‘summed them up’, made your opinion about them, and you bring that opinion into future interactions.

Why do we create shortcuts at a brain level? To save mental energy – our brain is hardwired for laziness based on our survival instinct. Bottom line, your brain wants you to create habits, automatic responses and repetitious behaviours so you can have as much energy available at any moment in time in case you need to run for your life (flight) or fight for your life (fight). Lucky for us in gorgeous Australia, we don’t have a lot of threats to our life on a daily basis.

What does this mean? We can take back control of our brain. We can think fresh in every moment. We can be much more creative and respond to current information available to us in the moment. We can make our minds up about something or someone based on what is ‘real data’ in this very moment; instead of letting our past views, impressions, decisions and habits guide our behaviour.

Let’s be clear on one thing. You’ll have thousands of awesome habits and patterns and repetitious behaviours that lead to awesome outcomes. Keep them; allow your brain to repeat those ones when appropriate.

What I am suggesting is to be in the moment, every moment and make fresh choices that will lead to the best result for you and anyone else you are interacting with or influencing. If your old habits lead to mediocre results, choose a different thought, emotional response, behaviour or words that will create a fabulous outcome for all.

How do you create new habits in situations where you question the effectiveness of hanging onto the old? Easy!

  1. Pause, you need to do this to be able to be in the moment.
  2. Ask yourself: Is what I am about to say or do going to lead to fabulous outcomes for all involved?
  3. Take action. Think thoughts, speak words and choose behaviours that will lead to getting awesome results. The great thing here is you have unlimited possibilities available to you.

An important thing to be aware of when creating new ways of being, you need to be consistent. You learnt all of your current habits through repetition (for example when learning to drive a car, you observed others, took some lessons, practiced until you were ready for your test and then passed your test). Therefore, to learn any new behaviour and make it your natural way of being will require repetition.

I would love to hear your ideas. Answer this:

‘What is possible for me if I choose to be present in each and every moment, leaving the past in the past and creating fresh?’