The ideas in your head will rule your world!
"Any attempt we make at changing human performance that does not first
address what we think or feel about ourselves is destined to failure!"
The ideas in your kid's heads will rule their world...
what ideas will you allow into your kid's head?
(We must teach our children that the ideas in
their head are up to them, and nobody can put any idea in their head
without their consent!)
"Judgment is a fine commodity,
but it is virtually useless in the thick of battle!"
("Simply put: we are going to fight with what was already
in our script… not what we think about during the fight!")
As parents, we must have a plan to our actions and we must
teach our children how to make the big decisions in their lives long before
they are in the situations demanding their strength of character.
The Three Functions of the Brain
The Conscious Brain is that part of our brain we use for
doing things we think about. We can only think one thing at a time with our
Conscious Brain. The idea in our mind at any given moment is our Conscious
Brain at work. (If you want to hear it at work, just listen to your silent
voice as you continually talk to yourself. That is your Conscious Brain.) At
this point let's use a metaphor and imagine that each of the three parts of
our brain is a little person inside our head. The Conscious Brain is our
"Actor/Actress" who plays our part in the world, always making sure we act
just like ourselves! It makes you dress like you, talk like you, walk like
you, and do all the things you can do. The "Actor/Actress" also becomes very
uncomfortable if our actions do not match our script.
The Sub-Conscious Brain is that part of our brain we use
for doing all the thousands of things we don't think about. Many of these
fall into the category of autonomic functions that are biologically
determined like breathing, blinking, and heart rate. However the bulk of the
activity controlled by the Sub-Conscious Brain is learned! We learn how to
do them, and then we do them without conscious thought every bit as
naturally as our heart beats or we breathe and blink. Using the metaphor,
again, of each part of our brain being a little person inside our head, the
Sub-Conscious Brain is our "Script-Writer" who continually writes a script
for our "Actor/Actress" to follow in playing our part in the world.
As we learn things about ourselves, the "Script-Writer"
records them so we can act without having to think consciously about the
every action. This script runs the gamut from things as simple as buttoning
a shirt or combing our hair, to complex activities like driving a car or
operating a word processor. It also stores scripts about things we learn
about our capabilities like, "I'm messy," or "I'm not very good at sports
and math," or "I'm really a happy person who always finds the silver lining
in every cloud!"
All our "Actor/Actress"
has to do for most actions is simply check with our script in order act like
us. We go through life effortlessly and efficiently doing most of what we do
very naturally because we have learned how we act and have stored it in our
script. This script is often accurate in recording our abilities but it can
be just as easily mistaken in recording our level of ability or function.
The "Actor/Actress" has no choice but to follow this detailed script. Most
of what is stored in the script is not the result of actual experience but
rather is the result of self-talk. So, it is not what happens to us that
shapes our script as much as it is what we say to ourselves about what
happens to us. The key is to focus on the positive aspects of what happens
to us and repeat those aspects to ourselves.
The Creative Sub-Conscious Brain is that part of our brain
that has the job of making the Conscious and Sub-Conscious work in harmony
with each other. Many times it is referred to as the part of our brain
entrusted with keeping us sane by making sure our actions are consistent
with our stored or learned picture of how we should act. Again, using the
metaphor of each part our brain being a little person inside our head, the
Creative Sub-Conscious Brain is the "Director" who is given the job of
producing the movie of our life. Just like the director of a movie, this
"Director" has the job of making the movie match the script. The "Director"
must insure that the script is closely followed. To do this the "Director"
has been given a three-part contract, which must be followed if the movie is
to be properly produced. (This contract is shown in the lower the right in
the above diagram.)
Three Part "Contract for the Director"
The contract states that the "Director" must make
absolutely sure the "Actor's/Actress's" actions balance with the script
written by the "Script-Writer." If our conduct is not in balance with the
script, the "Director" must act to restore balance as quickly and as
efficiently as is possible. The "Director" has control of all the
psychological drive and energy necessary to achieve this balance even at
great physical cost to the individual.
Example: When a person
is asked to do something out of character with what they would normally do,
like singing a difficult song to strangers, the "Director" will call up many
common human responses to this perceived imbalance like giggling, fidgeting,
appealing to others for help, sweating, getting red in the face, increasing
the heart and breathing rate, producing light-headedness, and even causing
flight (removing ones self physically from the situation.) If our script
says singing is something we are neither good at nor comfortable with, then
the "Director" will be certain that we fail at singing when asked to do it.
Not only will the "Director" have us fail, but also will have us feel very
uncomfortable as we try.
The contract states that the "Director" must be amoral.
The "Director" does not make decisions about right or wrong, good or bad,
happy or sad. The "Director" simply looks at the script and produces the
movie as it is written. The "Director" does not evaluate talent or ability
or select what actions are best for us. The "Director" simply uses the
script to direct the action and performance of the "Actor/Actress" so it
matches the script as closely as possible.
This explains why some people who seem to have remarkable
abilities just never rise to a high level of performance while others with
seemingly insurmountable handicaps achieve astonishing accomplishments. It
explains how a person with no arms or hands can become a skilled painter
using a brush held between toes, while a person with two very functional
hands cannot even create a simple painting. The key here is to aim for those
positive scripts in our heads and most importantly in the heads of our
Third, No Access to the Script:
The contract states that in maintaining or restoring
balance, the "Director" has no access to the script. Just like the director
of a real movie, our "Director" does not have the ability or authority to
change the script to match some new action by the "Actor/Actress" even
though the new action may be more to the liking of either, or both. Once the
script is written, the movie must be produced to match!
So, what does it all mean?
This can be a very depressing plot for our life or the
lives of our children because it says if we have a script of poor
performance, we are doomed to that level of performance forever. Because it
is in our script, it is thus in our "movie". The key is that our
"Actor/Actress" has access to our "Script-Writer" and thus to our script!
We can change our script through our self-talk. This
continuous conversation our Conscious Brain has with our Sub-Conscious Brain
is the process our mind uses to program itself and rule our actions. We need
to know this as we structure our techniques for working with our kids for
two reasons: First, we must use our own self-talk to structure our own
behavior (or else we are doomed to repeat the scripts we have in our heads
for parenting). Second, in working with our children, we must use techniques
that encourage their own productive self-talk to bring about positive
scripts in their heads.
The rest of this course will be dedicated to
teaching some effective techniques for parents to use in bringing about
productive behavior in children by changing both our own scripts as parents,
and the scripts of our children's lives.
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Assignment Sheet - Lesson 1
- Name three of your own behaviors that
were learned, and that no longer require conscious thought on your part.
(Like: tying your shoes, shifting your car, or that you are kind of
- Name three behaviors in each of your
children that were learned that no longer require them to think about
consciously. (As you are thinking of these try to not just list negative
or annoying behaviors. List things like: dressing themselves, the manner
in which they speak to you, a certain favorite food that they like, or a
special ability that they have.)
- Name three ideas that you have allowed
to rule your world that are very positive in nature and produce outcomes
that are very desirable. (Like: "I am a very productive person in the
morning," or "I love to talk with others and they like to talk to me
because I am such a good listener," or "I am a very organized person," or
"I am a very frugal person and I get the most out of my money."
- Name three ideas that you have allowed
to rule your world that are not necessarily accurate and are definitely
not positive ideas. Many of these are ideas that you would not choose if
you were to really stop and think about it. (Like: "I hate Mondays," or
"I'm too busy to play with my kids," or "I'm always unlucky and I never
win anything," or "I never have enough time to do the things that I want
- Name three ideas that each of
your children has allowed to rule their world that are very positive in
nature and produce outcomes that are very desirable. (Like: "I am a happy
kid and I never let things get me down," or "I love music and I allow
music to brighten my life," or "I am an extremely curious person so I am
constantly learning new stuff," or "I am especially kind to my
- Name three ideas that each of your children has allowed
to rule their world that are not necessarily accurate and are definitely
not positive ideas. Many of these are ideas that neither of you would
choose if you were to really to stop and think. (Like: "I often blame
others for my poor performance," or "I often respond to my family and
friends in less than friendly and respectful ways," or "I sometimes do not
give my best effort at school.")
Please keep in mind that
the purpose of these exercises is to maximize the number of positive and
productive ideas that are stored in your mind and the minds of your
children. Also, at the same time it is hoped that the negative and
non-productive ideas can be identified and eliminated or kept to a minimum.
Many of the negative ideas will simply become of no consequence, however,
because your new positive ideas will displace those ideas, which do not
produce desirable behavior.
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