How Mindfulness Can Reset Our Belief System
Article written for MindBodyGreen.com
One of the most profound moments in my healing path was during a 30-day silent meditation retreat in Nepal, finally, when everything around me and in me was still. I finally had enough space to witness the noise inside me with a distance. After that I made a real commitment to change myself and become someone that adds to life, not subtracts from it.
There comes a point in our lives when we need to stop and reassess our belief systems to truthfully rewire our patterns of thought. We must evolve internally. This is the most profound work, to clean up that dusty mirror that has been passed on from grandmother to mother and now to you. It's time to clean the dust and reframe the mirror and maybe even move it from the bathroom to the front door.
This is why some scientists say humans don't really have free will, because we not only inherit our parents' genetic predisposition but their habits and thought patterns as well. When we finally have some internal space to see them playing out from a distance, we can start to respond to life proactively, not reactively. It's in that space between stimulus and response that we have the opportunity to become compassionate.
Discover the person you want to be.
It's so hard to actually catch those moments when we notice our personal biases; these fragments of clarity are the opportunity to create congruence between our intentions, speech, and actions. We think that once the process of upgrading our negative subconscious agreements start all the poison leaves, but it's a slow process. The work lies in honoring our scars, but the real honor is in transcending and transmuting them. In this way we free ourselves of the old and implement new priorities in our nervous system.
Discover the person you want to be. As good as it sometimes feels to have that warm misery blanket, each time you decide to take the blanket off yourself you are waking up to the rest that is already awakened.
When we start to meet ourselves at these deep unknown places we start to question our belief systems, and we notice that a lot of what has been ingrained in us doesn't serve us. This is the work of the subconscious mind and our genetic predisposition. A lot of the work in the "NEW Age Movement" has to do with rewiring our belief systems, learning to let go of the old agreements that unfortunately have been reinforced over time and now are so hard to get rid of.
The deeper we meet ourselves is as deep as we will be able to meet others.
Think about the subconscious mind as a huge room in this house that you live in; in this room you notice how dirty and moldy some of the furniture is, like grandma's trauma from moving to another country, or that third-grade teacher who said you couldn't do it; it is in this place that all of your belief systems, behaviors, and memories are stored.
By the simple mechanism of noticing that these old agreements or pieces of furniture don't serve you well, it's a moment of mindfulness in which we can make a change. Start by cleaning out your extra baggage. We can only keep the usable baggage, everything else has got to go! The majority of stuff that fills up that subconscious part of ourselves is creating the blueprint of our lives; it has been passed on with so much fear and unforgiveness, trapping us in the past and future. This is why it's hard to notice these assumptions and prejudices.
One of the most powerful steps in getting in touch with personal biases is to forgive yourself for not taking such good care of your body, for how you have been your own worst enemy allowing the negative chatter to play out, and ultimately, for not believing in yourself.
You will start associating more with those who awaken the magic in you
Pay attention to these thoughts, beliefs, and behaviors that weigh you down. There's no need to unpack and open up the wounds; simply spread the healing cream on, which comes as self-forgiveness and affirmations to foster change and counteract negative thoughts. Put a reminder alarm on your phone, on the bathroom mirror and fridge, before bed and when you wake up.
You will start to notice your social circle evolving. You will start associating more with those who awaken the magic in you, those people who benefit your well-being: determined, funny, loving, and grateful human beings.
We know that our food habits are a reflection of our state of mind, so by eating clean you start to clean yourself internally. This physical cleanup is a crucial step on your healing path. Your body now has more time and energy to process other functions, and you can utilize this energy toward implementing a daily meditation practice, calming the conscious mind—then you can start to witness the prejudices playing out.
In this process we make friends with our most powerful tool, our mind. You intuitively know that we are all born good and that we all want the same things in life. Your worst deeds do not define who you are; compassion is tangible.