Last year, I decided to take up mountain biking. My default modus operandi is to play full out, so I picked challenging terrains and went fast right from the start. After crashing pretty hard a couple of times, I signed up for a Mountain Biking Skills Clinic with expert rider and master teacher Dylan Renn (asingletrackmind.com). The first tip he gave us was, “Look at where you are going. Not at what you want to avoid.”
This one simple tip improved my biking so much! I realized that my tendency was to look at the rock, ditch, or other obstacle I needed to avoid, instead of staying focused on where I wanted to go. And inevitably, my bike followed my gaze! No matter how I tried to steer my bike away from an obstacle I saw, it would keep going straight toward the danger. But if I just made a correction, let go of my compulsion to look at what scared me, and focused on my path, my bike followed my gaze with perfect accuracy. When I focused on where I wanted to go, my body’s innate intelligence was free to do what it took to get me there, in a way my mind never could.
Then I realized that this principle holds true for all of life, not just mountain biking. Our brains have a goal-seeking mechanism called the ‘Reticular Activating System’ (RAT for short). It creates images of whatever we think about and turns them into goals, especially for those thoughts that are the most frequent or emotionally charged. In this way, the RAT molds your life around where you put your attention.
Essentially, your RAT is one of the most important mechanisms of the Law of Attraction in your life; it is the reason why what you focus on expands in your experience. What’s important to realize, though, is that your RAT doesn’t understand negation. It can’t create an image of “No scarcity” or “No anger”. If you try to create your reality by focusing on what you don’t want, all your RAT can do is create an image of scarcity or anger, and unconsciously direct you toward this reality.
This is why, as compelling as our fears may sometimes be, we need to be clear on what we want to create, and claim that with positive affirmations. For instance, if you’re creating a sense of peace and freedom, you could say, “I experience peace and freedom.” If you’re creating financial abundance, you would say, “All my financial needs are continuously met,” and so on.
The key is to understand that when you focus on where you want to go, your path can open up for you in truly mysterious ways. It’s the difference between saying, “I’ll believe it when I see it,” and knowing that “I’ll see it when I believe it.”
My invitation for you over these next two weeks is to be especially aware of where you’re looking when you create your future. How are you stating your decrees or affirmations, in the negative, or in the positive?
Keep your focus on what you want, and enjoy the feelings that naturally emerge when you envision these possibilities. To me, creating your reality really is about where you choose to put your focus moment-to-moment. How happy are you now, with or without the thing you think you need to be happy? Stay in gratitude for what you have, knowing that something better is always on its way to you. Your deepest desires can only be fulfilled Now.