Science has now documented that you can make choices to help ameliorate your suffering by changing your brain’s structure and thus your perspective. Your brain is a living, dynamic computer that is always moving and changing, cataloging and processing information, and it never shuts off until the day you die. What you choose to give your attention to feeds your brain’s cells—firing up the network; sending blood, energy, and oxygen through pathways it has built to those particular neurons; building out more and more structure to hold what it is fed. You can begin to build new structure in your brain simply by choosing what you focus on. If you focus on negative things, your brain will build more structure to hold negativity. If you focus on positive things, your brain will build more structure to hold that. Your first efforts at changing your thinking and habits are more difficult but ultimately will become easy and automatic as your old neural structures are slowly dismantled and replaced with brand new structures.
So pay attention and notice your negative or fearful thoughts. This is so important. They are so subtle, but they are so defeating. Your brain is hardwired to protect you from threats, so any negative word or thought will release dozens of stress-producing hormones. Most people spend their life imprisoned in the tiny confine of their thoughts that are nothing more than firings and wirings within their brain. You don’t have to do that. Your unhappiness is not coming from other people or your circumstances but from your mind’s conditioning. Research now shows that holding a positive word, such as “peace” or “love,” in your mind will actually alter your gene expression and stimulate the motivational center of your brain to build strength there. If you are currently dealing with debilitating physical or emotional pain, don’t pile onto it by saying, “This will never end; I hate my body; I hate myself; It isn’t fair; I’m a terrible person; I can’t do that; I am worthless.” These are perceptions; they are not reality.
Today, will you make the decision to stop breaking your own heart? The fight is not against yourself or your circumstances but against your negative thinking. You can be set free from the tyranny of these habituated reactions into a spacious place of trust and hope. Will you begin by simply noticing and acknowledging any negative thoughts you are having right now? Next, refusing any more defeating self-judgment, just let them be. Now, let them go. Then, let in the good by redirecting your thoughts to gratitude. Each time you lift your heart to God in gratitude, you are brought nearer to Him. Nothing is wasted or beyond His healing touch. Everything has divine purpose. Your wounds will become your place of authority; the place from which you can touch another with compassionate understanding. Consistently choosing this new way of thinking will take time and it will take desire, but it will happen, creating in you a transcendent joy that is not dependent on your external happiness making you a powerful participant in your own healing. The Hidden Life Awakened page 24-25
To watch a short video of Betty talking more about this, click below.