Are You Failing to Free Yourself Due to an Outdated Map?
Imagine you are planning a hike in the wilderness. The trek is out of cell phone reception range so no GPS is available. You want to reach a destination that is further out than you have ever been. You finish your plan and head out to the woods.
The sun is shining, it’s a cool 65 degrees with a light breeze. You are walking down a wooded path. The sounds of birds, the cool breeze through the leaves and the small animals make you smile. You feel merged with the forest and your thoughts. You snap out of your Zen like state and look around, all around. Your heart races, beads of sweat roll down your neck and your throat dries up and you think
You sprint back down the path in the direction you came. Don’t stop running until you are in familiar territory again. Sit down on a familiar stump and catch your breath and figure out what happened.
You were using an outdated limited map that was not large enough to include the new territory.
What Kind of Map am I Really Talking About?
I am talking about your mental landscape, your mindset, your context. It is your beliefs, concepts, experiences, values. The lens through which you assign meaning to the events in your life. A filter through which you interpret, perceive and analyze. Your version of what “reality” seems to be. The cause of many of the results in your life.
It is important to remember that the map is not reality itself. Rather it consists of your beliefs about reality. It is not some rock bottom, unmovable characteristic of reality or an absolute truth. This is good news. It means there is much more flexibility for growth than is usually thought.
What Happens When You Expand Your Mindset?
When you expand your mindset what you believe is possible for your life expands. You become more aware that you are the one creating a limiting map. Thus, you have a choice to create a more expansive one.
Expanding the map connects you with your power of invention. You will remember that you created the limited map that has brought you thus far in your life. This occurs through intellectual cooperation. The agreement often operates out of awareness. Expanding the map brings more of “you” to conscious awareness.
Why is it Important to Expand This Map if I Want to Blaze New Trails?
The bottom line is you cannot keep a limited map of self and “reality” and do extraordinary things. Otherwise, it is like trying to squeeze extraordinary things into a small space.
You learn to move a smaller limited version of yourself out of the way to let something much larger in. This is not about giving things up or reducing them down to figure them out. It is about expansion, proliferation, invention and creation.
This requires a willingness for inner change. It is common in our culture for people to dig their feet and claim this or that will not change me. Yet if you want extraordinary things to occur you must expand your version of what is. People often prefer a few magic tricks and quick fixes within their current mindset. True fundamental change doesn’t happen that way. You must expand the paradigm itself.
How Can You Best Expand Your Map?
One of the most powerful ways is by increasing the power of your imagination. The imagination is infinite. It is the non-physical and not bound by any rules or logical restrictions.
Not any use of the imagination. You need an explosive, powerful use of the imagination. Imagination explored and expanded in conscious and aware states. Imagination not used to escape reality but rather to create reality. One of the fastest ways to do this is by using certain types of imagination exercises. (*I teach a series of these not found anywhere else).
But What if I’m Not Imaginative/Creative?
Often in our culture we approach changes with only logic. But this is only a very small part of the picture. The real powerhouse behind the curtain is imagination. And it is a natural part of you.
Think of a time in your life when you imagined something changing on purpose. You perceived in a fresh way via your imagination and it sparked massive changes in your life.
For example, someone imagines that they are no longer a smoker. Or someone who is overweight imagines themselves yourself as lean. Or someone imagines themselves in a new role at work. Yes, they need to act to make it happen. But the fuel behind it and to sustain it is in the imagination.
This is about taking conscious control of this very natural ability. Once you get used to it you’ll know it is an integral part of who you are. It is not foreign or complicated at all.
People may be at various levels. But everyone has creative abilities. It is innate to who we are. Ever invent your own recipe? Write a story? Start a new life in a new town? Design a house you wanted to live in? So yes… you are creative.
Each person can improve and expand. If you went to the gym and started lifting 5 pounds, and in two weeks you were lifting 10 – that is progress. You start by lifting 100 pounds – well, in a few weeks you can be lifting 150 – also progress. The question is not where others are… the question is where are you – and how can you improve?
Blaze New Trails by Updating Your “Map”
To go further than you have before you cannot use an old limited mental map. You need to expand your context to experience greater possibilities, results and fulfillment. You need something new, something from the outside of the usual map that has brought you thus far. Imagination used in powerful ways is one of the fastest ways to get you there.
It sure beats being lost in the woods!