Did you know that your brain has a GPS, just like a vehicle? And if that GPS doesn’t match the results you want to achieve in yourself and your life, it can keep you stuck in the same old patterns.
If you wanted to drive from the city to the beach, but your GPS was still set for the city, of course, you’d never reach the beach. Every time you started heading in the direction of the beach, your GPS would be turning you around and guiding you back to the city. Changing the GPS to match your desired destination means you’re automatically guided to that result.
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The brain’s default setting
From birth, the unconscious part of the brain is continuously assessing and interpreting experiences, and then using that data to form a structure of self-image and worldview. These implicit (unconscious) memories provide the brain with references that determine automatic responses and reactions in daily life.
What is implicit memory?
If you were to look outside and notice that it’s raining, how do you know it’s rain? How do you know it’s not dangerous? How do you know that if you walk out into it without an umbrella or coat, you’ll get wet?
You probably can’t remember your first experiences of rain, but your brain has the information stored in the form of unconscious or implicit memory.
The same is true for our experiences with people, money, business, relationships, social situations, health, and all other aspects of our lives. As you go about your daily life, the unconscious part of your brain is constantly referring to its GPS (those implicit childhood memories that create the structure of who you are and how the world works for you), to find out what this new experience means. It then triggers a chemical reaction in your brain and body. Those chemicals create sensations and feelings. As your conscious mind registers the sensations and feelings, they’re recognized as emotions; and those emotions determine your current perception and experiences, as well as the choices you make in the moment. This is how your brain continues to keep you in alignment with that self-image and worldview created automatically through childhood.
What’s childhood got to do with it?
Your childhood may be over, but your brain doesn’t know that.
If you find that your efforts to change something about yourself or your life don’t seem to be getting you where you want to be, check your GPS. And the great news is that not only will the process of checking your brain’s GPS give you clarity and insight into what’s keeping you stuck… but, just like the GPS in your car, it can also be changed!
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Changing the negative implicit childhood memories that provide your brain with the “evidence” that “proves” your current self-image and world view, automatically changes your experiences in life, moving forward.
What could you achieve if you not only believed but knew you were worthy, safe, organized, efficient, loved, and empowered? What action would you take, who would you connect with, what boundaries would you feel confident establishing, if you knew you were safe, loved, and respected no matter what.
How do you know it’s true?
Unconscious beliefs created in childhood are not based on fact or reality, they’re based on our experiences and the brain’s interpretation of those experiences. During childhood, if the brain interprets a combination of experiences to mean “I’m not worthy” or “I’m unlovable” or “It’s not safe to speak out” – or any other limiting unconscious beliefs – those beliefs (even though they’re not true) become the structure of our self-image and worldview as adults.
Unlike our conscious minds, the unconscious part of the brain can’t tell the difference between reality and imagination, can’t use logic or reason, and can’t judge something as unrealistic. You may remember watching a scary movie and feeling fear – the unconscious part of your brain triggered the fight-freeze-flight state as if the danger was real, even though your conscious mind knew it was just a movie. In the same way: Even though you may consciously know it’s not true, if the unconscious part of your brain still refers to implicit memories that “prove” you’re not worthy, it will continue to produce the stress chemicals that create those feelings of insecurity.
From self-esteem and confidence to productivity and motivation, to our health habits and choices in relationships – changing the implicit childhood memories that “prove” our current unconscious beliefs automatically changes those beliefs. Changing those beliefs changes self-image and worldview – and in turn, our perception, emotions, decisions, and actions – and therefore, our results.
But… can memories really be changed?
There are two reasons implicit memories (the brain’s GPS) can be changed to match the results we want to experience in ourselves and our lives:
1. Memories are already changing.
According to neuroscience, not only can memories be changed, but they’re also already changing! Memories are neither accurate nor permanent, and are already changing and updating every time we recall them.
You may have found that when you’re speaking with friends or family about an event you all experienced in the past – everyone seems to have a different version of what happened. That’s because in the first instance, everyone’s experience of the event was subjective, filtered through their existing self-image and worldview (unconscious beliefs), and then the memories were updated based on each individual’s experiences since that event.
Memories are subjective, not objective.
2. Conscious vs Unconscious
Since the unconscious part of the brain can’t tell the difference between reality and imagination, can’t use logic or reason the way the conscious mind can, and can’t judge something as unrealistic – it will believe the new memories, while your conscious mind will still be able to remember what originally happened.
Just like changing the GPS in your vehicle means the GPS will accept the coordinates of the new destination and automatically guide you there, while you as the driver, can still remember where you were before.
Giving the unconscious part of your brain new GPS “coordinates” to refer to – that match the results you want to experience in your life, moving forward – makes change effortless and automatic.
Odille Remmert is an international mindset coach and author, specializing in empowering individuals to create success in all areas of life by gaining control over their own brain chemistry and changing negative implicit childhood memories, using the latest in neuroscience. Her book, co-authored with her husband, Steve Remmert, Change What Happened to You: How to Use Neuroscience to Get the Life You Want by Changing Your Negative Childhood Memories is available everywhere books are sold. Learn more at www.theremmertmethod.com.