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Both/And not Either/Or

How do you respond when your brain is highly active and analytical?

This past week I had various tentative opportunities show up surprisingly on my phone notifications. One was a potential coaching client, another a learning opportunity, and third a meditation retreat. All near in timing. It was wonderful, yet the initial reaction in me was frustration. I really wanted x to thrive and thought y and z would get in the way ie they’d be a distraction. However, I realized I was under the emotions of stress and wasn’t thinking clearly. What did I do to get out of this situation and see it clearly? I decided to journal everything that was going on in my head. One thing I journaled was a technique with asking better questions. Often, especially when under the emotions of stress, we ask questions that further our feelings of stress and feeling stuck. According to scientific research on brain scans, the brain actually worsens the more one thinks in high beta brain waves (overly analytical). Rather than asking these limiting questions, I asked (1) “how is it I always know what to do?” and (2)“how is it that I always know how to make the most of these opportunities?” Shortly after I realized the limit I placed on myself above: It’s not an either/or situation but a both/and situation. I had felt that saying yes to one opportunity would be saying no to the other opportunities, but that just isn’t so! Once I realized this - and allowed the emotions to settle down throughout the day - my friend Ryan Hance (his website and his podcast with me) shared with me a couple more questions he used in a similar situation: (1) “what do I need from this experience to be fulfilled spiritually?” and (2) “what do I need from this experience to be able to fulfill my business vision?” These questions helped me sit down and consider how all of these opportunities can work out in the best way possible. It inspired me to hop in my think tank and create an intention/vision for what I want to happen.

When a question is posed the brain seeks its records to answer the question. Whatever information the brain has about a particular subject or question it will bring up in one’s awareness. It is possible to see how, depending on our knowledge about a subject is, this can be limited. If I ask “why does this sh*t always happen to me?” - you guessed it! - my brain will provide me with reasons to justify why. Thus, it is beneficial to ask yourself a better question, one that leads to action - calm and clear action.

So my challenge for you is to ask yourself an empowering question next time you feel stressed! Here’s a great one to start with: “How is it I always know how to respond effectively in these situations?!” You can even hit your hand on a hard surface and exclaim the question in joy! Additionally, keep up and maintain the energy that having the solution feels like.

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