Our minds often create a distorted picture of ourselves and our abilities like this reflection of two faces in the water.
Imagine that you walk to the bathroom after you wake up in the morning and look in the mirror.
Your face is distorted as if in a funhouse mirror.
It looks like your skin is dripping off of your face as if it were melting away.
You’re disgusted … afraid to touch your own skin.
This is just an exercise in imagination, right? But unfortunately, our minds do something like this to us every day. We have thoughts like “I can’t do this” or “They won’t accept me” or even “I suck.”
When we hold these thoughts as true, they affect how we feel and behave. They are our reality. I bring them up here because they are our biggest barriers to learning.
They are judgments that stop the learning process cold.
For example, a student, let’s call him John, struggled with math when he was in second grade. He concluded, “I’m not good at math.” And of course, this becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. From then on, any time he has difficulty with math, it’s just more evidence of this belief.
Anup is from India. In his community, people believe that one’s ability to do math comes from hard work. So when Anup struggles, he is told by his teachers that he’ll need to work harder and try some new learning strategies. The next time Anup struggles, he hears his teacher’s voice, “We’ll find a way,” and he does.
As you can see, the mind’s occurrings during the learning process will impact learning.
If your occurrings say that you can’t do something or that it’s too hard, then you’ll find yourself struggling not just with learning but with your thoughts as well. So things get twice as hard.
So how do we end this inner struggle that makes learning so difficult?
We use the steps of the Lefkoe Freedom Process to get in touch with reality outside our minds. First, as soon as you notice that thoughts or feelings are getting in the way of learning, you can stop. Then ask the following questions:
“What am I feeling?”
“What thoughts/occurrings are showing up?” “How is my mind judging what’s happening that’s causing my feelings?”
“What concrete events are happening?” “What can be seen and heard that is happening now?”
Then notice that the concrete events are different than the occurrings generated by the mind.
And (this is optional) you might create some alternative ways of seeing the same concrete events.
Finally, notice how your feelings have changed or not.
Just to make the steps clear, let’s work through an example.
John is struggling with math.
He asks, “What am I feeling?”
Then “What occurrings are showing up?”
Answer: “I can’t do this. I’m just no good at math.”
Then “What concrete events are happening?”
Answer: “I’m writing down the steps of this problem, and I can see that the answer I got is different than the one in the back of the book. I don’t know where I went wrong.”
Then he notices that the concrete events are different than the occurrings.
Answer: “I can see that they are different now. My mind says I can’t do it, but all I see is that I got an answer different than the one in the back of the book.”
Next, he asks, “How else can the events be interpreted?”
Answer: I don’t know why I got an answer wrong, that doesn’t mean I’m not good at something. There’s just something I don’t know.
Finally, he notices how his feelings have changed or not.
Answer: I noticed that it doesn’t feel so heavy or frustrating. I still don’t know the answer. But now I feel hopeful that I will find out what I did wrong so I can fix it.
Notice that John didn’t come up with any unique insights. Anyone outside his situation could see that he just needed to find out what he did wrong with the math problem. But after dissolving the occurring, he was able to notice this himself, which makes it far more powerful.
Just like John, so many of us have occurrings that distort our view of reality like the funhouse mirror.
And when you work to dissolve those occurrings, the distortion clears. You see reality. You are looking through clean glass, and you see yourself and the world more clearly. And this is what it takes to learn effectively when we struggle. We must notice the occurrings and see past them to reality.
Once we do that, we can continue the learning process and develop amazing skills we never thought we could learn.
Try the Lefkoe Freedom Process today yourself and let me know the results. Pick just one event about which you still have some negative feelings. Then work through the steps described above to dissolve the meaning.
An invitation …
To many, our world today is stressful. On the news, there is so much well … bad news. In our social media feeds, there are arguments and name-calling. On our streets, there is more traffic and more road rage. I’ve spoken to many people who see all this feel like life is just too hard.
Well, it doesn’t have to be that way.
It’s possible to experience the same events without the stress. You can be someone who others marvel at saying “He/She’s so calm” the next time something “bad” happens. This is what happens to our students in the Lefkoe Freedom Course.
The stress they used to have slowly melts away as their minds dissolve the meaning from one event after another until it becomes a habit. Over time events that used to bother them no longer do. And positive feelings show up on their own more and more often.
We will be offering the Lefkoe Freedom Course 2.0 again in September to a small number of students. This is so we can give you the individual attention required to develop a new set of skills that allow you to gain the power of a quiet mind.
We’ll only be sending this special offer to those who join the waiting list.
To get on the list, click join the waiting list.
When you do, you’ll get a few special goodies while you wait.