The groove I’m talking about just might be a rut – working on autopilot. And, the rut you’re in may be easier to get out of than you imagined. We’re programmed for the rut – and it’s not always a bad thing.
Understanding when it’s good, when it’s dangerous and how you can open to life-changing possibilities is what being open to a new idea is all about. Sound intriguing? Take 10 minutes right now and change your life. Sound like a big promise? That’s because it is!
We all have a certain pattern of moving in the world and of acting and reacting to all the things that are presented to us every day. Those are many and increasing all the time. Our lives are busy and with all the media we digest and the snippets of information that pass by our view. We’re used to tuning a certain amount out, just to keep sane and stay focused on the things we have chose. We want to be ‘dialed into’ life. The tuning out serves us in the moment, but does it serve us long-term overall? Yes and no…
Our brains are marvelous creations. Each of us has a natural coping mechanism that allows us to process new input and stimuli. We reference it against what we already know. Every single thing that happens isn’t a brand new experience. Though we see it as totally related to all the experiences in our existing ‘data bank’.
Get off Autopilot!
We can do a certain number of functions on a very effective ‘autopilot’. We don’t have to think through in detail and depth, every single thing we do and decision we make. In order to keep us sane and functioning at a high level, our mind processes the many tasks we do over and over on a repetitive basis. Naturally it would be impossible to capture every thought every minute. It would drive us insane.
This leave us to be on autopilot where we don’t have to think. We literally dig ‘grooves’ in our brain of repetitive patterns. This makes it easy for us to do certain things on virtual autopilot. Our mind creates pattern so we don’t have to make the same decisions over and over again. Or even evaluate information anew.
This serves us very well in our regular routines, keeping us in autopilot. It’s the reason you can move through things you do often or drive somewhere and realize afterward you weren’t completely aware of what you were doing.
Have you ever had the experience of getting behind the wheel, arriving somewhere and thinking “I’m here already; I don’t even remember driving through town”? Or you realize you’ve already fed the dog and the kids and have packed lunch. You are almost ready to walk out the door and you have to stop to remember if you did something that you already did. Are you on your ‘autopilot setting?”
You get the idea, you’ve had this experience in some form, we all have.
However, the existence of these grooves and our natural patterning doesn’t necessarily serve us. It keeps us closed to new ideas when presented. I’m not suggesting that we have patterns for everything. But we’re so programmed this way that we become either brain dead or boring.
The grooves being on autopilot allow us to conserve energy. It’s not that we can’t decide what to think or whether or not to be open-minded. By creating a pattern and sticking to it, we are able to use our creative energy for bigger and newer ideas. The grooves we create serve us well and fit naturally into our desire for order and efficiency.
We just don’t want the autopilot to become the preferred way of moving in the world; otherwise you become closed to the new possibilities that pass your way when they arrive.
When you allow yourself to be open to new ideas, you allow possibility into your life. Think of these moments as decision points – and as opportunities. These are opportunities for all kinds of things:
- enlarging your experience,
- maybe changing course,
- or realizing greatness.
It may just show up looking like new people in your life who bring new experiences and change your thinking, your vision and thereby your life! When we’re paying attention, we know that everything is showing up for a reason. We’re drawing the right experiences to us. However, even if we accept that premise as our reality, we can get lost in busy and miss the very thing we’ve asked for when it shows up in our universe.
And, what you ask for doesn’t always show up looking like you thought it would. A part of the creative process is being open to what’s offered you. The possibility of what you ask for will manifest. Even if it’s not exactly how you pictured or envisioned it. Sometimes it doesn’t look how you imagined. It may just turn out to be way better and bigger than you would have allowed us.