To be efficient humans label things.
Thinking a label like “that’s BAD” or “that’s GOOD” triggers a neurological transmitter cascade and we feel an emotion.
The emotion triggers a physiological response and we move.
Our primitive brain constantly uses labels to get things done.
Labels efficiently trigger emotions and actions. ALL UNCONSCIOUSLY!
In caveman days this kept us safe, alive.
Brains throw out negative and positive labels. If you are paying attention to what you are thinking it may seem like there are a lot more negative labels coming out than positive ones.
That is because we use negative labels when we are anxious, fearful, angry, discouraged, frustrated, confused, or bored.
If we allow ourselves to feel this way most of the time our primitive brain will throw out A LOT of negative labels!
My primitive brain uses negative labels to keep me fearful and keep me from harm. The PRIMARY effect this has on me is to keep me from changing ANYTHING.
The SECONDARY effect this has on me is to make persistent thought loops of self-judgment, self-deception and low self-confidence that produce more negative thoughts! Who would want to consciously think this way!!!
We can’t stop our unconscious from brain labeling things for us. The thoughts slip up silently and are just there. I wish I could “reprogram” my brain to stop with the negative labels but my brain isn’t a computer.
If my brain tells me “I’m too old to learn that!” “I’m too stupid to do that!” “I’m too ugly to be there!” then I don’t learn, experience, or enjoy life as much as I could.
But my primitive brain says, “Stay SAFE and COMFORTABLE with what you have always done and you won’t be harmed!”
My brain labeled a box of doughnuts as a GOOD way to stay SAFE and COMFORTABLE before I realized what it was doing.
My brain labeled the box of doughnuts SAFE and COMFORTABLE because the sugar calmed my fear that “I may never get another chance to eat a doughnut so I have to eat one NOW!” This thought of SCARCITY produced a feeling of fear. I felt so fearful of literally starving I would eat the doughnut to avoid the fear.
The only thing is, I don’t need the doughnut to prevent starving because I can buy a doughnut ANYTIME and ANYWHERE!
Our primitive brain’s strength is AMAZING.
Dr. Andy’s box of doughnuts used to be my Achilles heel. Some days I still want that doughnut, they show up on Fridays when I am tired, ready to relax, stressed from the week’s events and more susceptible to the SCARCITY label that produces my feeling of fear. And doesn’t that sound ridiculous when I say it out loud!
Think about what ridiculous labels you are using out of HABIT.
Find ways to light up your brain without food!