The Thursday Thesis - 16/06/2017
“Close Your Eyes...”
Where your mind goes, your body follows: it’s true for everyone and for everything.
And when I’m working with students, this is my favourite demonstration of the importance of mindset.
Try it for yourself by listening to the audio version of The Thesis, right now.
I ask the student to close their eyes, and start to feel more deeply relaxed. Now I ask them to hold their arms out in front of them at shoulder height with palms upwards.
I now tie an imaginary helium balloon around their right wrist, describing how the balloon looks, the colour of the ribbon knotted around their wrist, and I explain that the balloon is lighter than air and will – obviously – begin to lift up their right hand, so there’s no need to resist the rising sensation, because it’s a balloon-thing...
Now I ask them to prepare their left hand to support a copy of the Encyclopaedia Brittanica which I’ve just bought from a second-hand bookshop. I describe the book’s binding, the gold lettering on its spine and front, the thickness of the book and how heavy it is as I “place” it onto their uplifted palm. I explain that the book is very, very heavy and old; that it is dusty and that the paper is yellowed by the years.
Guess what happens – the “balloon” hand rises, sometimes a little, more often, rather a lot. But the “book” hand sinks downwards, sometimes shaking with the sustained effort of holding up that dusty old tome.
When I ask the student to open their eyes, they can see a huge difference in hand position. I ask them which was heavier, the book or the balloon?
“The book”, they tell me.
“What book?” I ask.
There is no book, and there is no balloon. The important point here is that your body will behave according to what we believe to be true.
In other words, whatever we believe, that’s how it is for us.
So, how do you want it to be, for you?
You alone will decide: the book or the balloon.
© Neil Cowmeadow 2017
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