Aside from using the Force to move objects and having a sword made out of freaking light, (how symbolic is that??) the best thing about being a Jedi has got to be the mind trick. The power to sway another with a calm voice and a wave of the hand, could bail us out of all kinds of hairy situations.
However, we're not manipulators, are we? For our purposes, we are going to leverage some mind tricks on ourselves, to override tendencies to stay in the comfort zone, avoid facing fears, procrastination and other forms of self-sabotage.
All my mind tricks are based on my understanding of how the subconscious mind works. It's typical M.O. is to protect us from anything we perceive as a bad, unpleasant or downright dangerous endeavor. Your rational mind makes the plans and the subconscious resists them. It's job is to keep everything safe and normal. This is why you have a hard time overriding it with reason and logic. You can use your force of will and overcome, but that takes strength on days where you don't have it, and you'll have a hard time being consistent or single minded.
Therefore, I have three "tricks" to help you navigate around your subconscious's ability to stop things up.
Repentance on Steroids
If you agree that one of the meanings of "repent" is to change one's mind, then this will help you 180. I'm not convinced it's enough to just say "I repent" and go on about your business. If that brings real change, great, but I've been a little let down by that exercise at times. I think we need more than head knowledge and a little verbal acknowledgement for lasting change. It needs to go to the core.
Our subconscious is programmed to cause us to move away from situations we perceive as painful, and to a lessor extent, towards pleasure. This is so that we can react and stay alive when we don't have time to think and formulate an escape plan. Unfortunately, it also keeps us from doing things that are only a threat to our ego, or our maintenance of status quo. It's the thing within us that makes sure we don't get into any similar situations that were unpleasant for us in the past, such as high school speech class.
The subconscious mind is highly impressionable. That means we can overwrite the emotions that are cataloged within it and switch our perception of pain and pleasure. We can change our mind. For instance, where we associated giving speeches with pain we can now associate pleasure with that and pain with the act of backing away from opportunities to speak. When we make this switch, it's no longer this uphill battle to do the things you should, or stop doing things that you know you shouldn't do. Double-mindedness and internal conflict stops. The how-to's for this whole exercise is documented here on a post I wrote on Medium.
These Are Not the Droids You're Looking For
You can straight up lie to your subconscious and it will buy it. It's kinda funny. This technique is better suited for the everyday things that come up that you don't want to do, whereas the above exercise is more valuable for that thing you continually battle. Here rather than going for the total mind change, we are just trying to drop the resistance level by pacifying a mind on high alert. An example would be, "I'm not really going to clean out the fridge right now, but I'll just throw out this cottage cheese." Augment this with the casual dismissive Jedi hand wave, and this may be enough to bypass your resistance levels and do what you need to do.
Activate Your Reticular Activator
Your reticular activating system acts as a filter between the conscious and subconscious minds. It's the thing that lets you ignore general noise, yet still pay attention when your name is being called. It's function is to get you to pay attention to what is important to you while filtering all the stuff that is ancillary.
To activate this thing and get it to help you, you need to get in touch with what you really want. You need to be as specific as you can get, which will program your reticular activating system to be on alert where ever you go, what ever you do, to grab opportunities and resources that you need to attain your vision and reach your goals.
This is what it looks like in real life. My husband decided he wanted a Toyota Tacoma pickup with an extended cab. From then on, he saw them everywhere and kept commenting on them. We could drive by a car lot and he could glimpse the roof of one way in the back and go "that's a nice little Tacoma." Anytime I went anywhere with him, we were happening on to trucks to test drive. Fortunately, he had also decided on some other specifics like price and mileage, so it took him a while to pull one out of the pack.
Dad was the same way about dead red fir trees. He could drive down the road and somehow see one that nobody else could, and that you had to hike back in to get.
Use this to your advantage so that you aren't having to work so hard to get what you want. It's just some time upfront being honest with yourself about what it is you would like out of life. Not what you think you can get. Not what you think you deserve. What you would like. This is hard for some people. God knows you better than you know yourself. Pray about it.
What to Use When
- Use "repentance on steroids" for those huge things that you continually face, that you know would make a world of difference in your life if you could change your perception of them.
- Use the Jedi lie for the little things you are reluctant to do.
- Use your reticular activating system to help you attain the things you want.
Have fun testing this stuff out and may the force be with you.