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maryanne@1000butterflies.ca

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My daughter, my son and my son’s girlfriend took me to the movie Molly’s Game last night.  I enjoyed the movie.  It is based off the true story of Molly Bloom who was a freestyle skier with hopes of making it to the Olympics.  She has an unfortunate accident in which a piece of a pine bough trim that when Molly passes over it, it is the right height and angle that it causes the clip on one of her skis to come undone.  Because she didn’t complete her jump, she didn’t qualify.  From that failure and circumstances she was driven to prove herself , where she ended up being a hostess/owner of hosting high stakes poker games for celebrities, A-listers, billionaires etc until the FBI rounded her up in 2013 with 34 other individuals saying she was laundering.  In the movie near the end her father, who is a clinical psychologist and a professor, says he is going to give her 3 years of free psychology in 3 answers on why she did it.  He does but he says that it wasn’t because of the pine bough incident but instead of her unconsciously knowing years earlier that he was cheating on his wife (her mother) and why she needed to be in power control.

This comes back to what I have learnt from my guides and as I stated earlier that sometimes it’s not what is in front of us that is holding us back, but that it has roots way back from our childhood or teenage years where we form the majority of our beliefs and opinions based on what we experienced or witnessed.

I finished an article in the summer 2017 edition of Scientific American volumn 26 number 3 for “mysteries of the mind and on page 29 the article is ‘why good thoughts block better ones“.   It talks about the Einstellung Effect: where the human brains tendency to stick with a familiar solution to a problem and to ignore alternatives.  Often it is good, but at other times it is not.  The thought is once you hit upon a successful method you tend to stick with it as there is no point trying to see if there is a new technique/method every time you need to make a decision.

In the article they talked about how they used chess players from novice to grand masters to determine how they came to a solution with a specific setup of a chess board on the least number of steps to achieve a checkmate.  The chess board had two solutions only for checkmate, one is the well known 5 step “smothered mate” (where the queen is sacrificed to drawn one of the other pieces to block the kings escape)  and the was a 3 step move that was less familiar.  What they found was that when they filmed the eyes of the players to see what they were looking at which squares and for how long.  It took 37 seconds for all the players to determine that the “smothered mate” was the best move to accomplish the least number of steps for checkmate.  But when the board was setup so that only the 3 step solution was the only solution, then the players used it.

QUOTE: “When the results were presented to the players for the 1st situation, they players insisted that the “smothered mate” was the only solution and not the 3 step.  the infrared camera revealed that even when the players said they were looking for a faster solution – and indeed believed they were doing so – they did not actually shift their gaze away from the squares they had already identified as part of the smothered mate moved.  In contrast, when presented with the one-solution chessboard (3 step), players initially looked at the squares and pieces important for the smothered mate and once they realized it would not work, directed their attention toward other squares and soon hit on the shorter solution…..

English philosopher, scientist and essayist Fancies Bacon was especially eloquent about one of the most common forms of cognitive bias in his 1620 book Novum Organum: “the human understanding when it has once adopted an opinion… draws all things else to support and agree with it.  And though there be a greater number and weight of instances to be found on the other side, yet these it either neglects or despises, or else by some distinction sets aside and rejects… men… make the events where they are fulfilled, but where they failed, though this happen much oftener, neglect and pass them by.  But with far more subtlety does this mischief insinuate itself into philosophy and the science, in which the first conclusion colors and brings into conformity with itself all that comes after.

… in controlled experiments, that even when people attempt to test theories in an objective way, they tend to seek evidence that confirms their ideas and to ignore anything that contradicts them. ”  unquote

This all got me thinking about decisions I have made in my life.  Was I unconsciously going with something that worked before and not looking for a possible better solution?  Yes, I can now see where I was doing this and not realizing it.  Then this got me thinking about some of my clients and friends that say things like: “I always attract the wrong type of guy/girl”.   Is that why we get stuck in life on the “lather, rinse, repeat cycle”?  Is that why we say it’s difficult to change?  But is it really difficult once we realize that we are repeating a behavior/pattern/thought etc?   I always tell my clients that it is only difficult when we bump up against the change by trying to control the outcome for how long it will take, who is affected etc, instead of focusing making the decision to make the change and on just doing it for YOU.  You are the only person who knows you and what you have lived.  You are the only person who can decide to change the cycle and ask yourself “am I repeating a pattern here or is there an easier solution for me?”  As Dr. Richard Bartlett, the developer of Matrix Energetics stated in one of his books that he asks himself “what am I NOT seeing, what am I NOT knowing, what am I NOT feeling?”  as this forces him to take a second look before he makes a decision to see if there is an easier solution.   I ask the same questions when I am working with a client.

In the SA article the last closing comment says it all:

we must try to learn to accept our errors if we sincerely want to improve our ideas.  English naturalist Charles Darwin came up with a remarkably simple and effective technique to do just this “I had… during many years, followed a golden rule, namely, that whenever a published fact, a new observation or thought came across me, which was opposed by my general results, to make a memorandum of it without fail and at once”  he wrote.  “For I found by experience that such facts and thoughts were far more apt to escape from memory than favorable ones”.

How many times have you gotten a new idea to change something that you would normally do something else, didn’t write it down and then “forgot” what that brilliant solution was?

If you want to make change, write it down, in your words how it will look, feel, etc.  Manifest your new life the way you want it to be.

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