One of my other activities that I “do”, is that of Music Teacher. One of my students, in her clarinet lesson couldn’t get a certain note to sound cleanly, unfuzzily, and without squeaking!
I grabbed my clarinet from it’s perch on top of the piano, and demonstrated the technique. To me, it was simple. To my student, it was as though she’d seen an electric lightbulb switch on for the first time.
“Wow!!! How did you do that??” I looked at her and answered “Practise”.
A quote from the Cinderella film from the 1950’s came to mind – where the Fairy Godmother effortlessly turns a pumpkin to a coach, mice into horses, and transforms rags into a wonderful dress for Cinderella – who gasps and says something along the lines of: “How’d you get so good at magic?” To which the answer is: “I practise my magic“.
Just think about all those things that you can do, now – effortlessly, and magically. Whether that’s cook a roast dinner so all the items are ready at the same time (a feat still to be achieved by myself!), or whether you’re a whizz on the computer, or whether you’re the bargain shopper of the year – everyone of us has things we can do so well, it appears magical to others.
What about those things we might do so well so that they appear as magic – but are maybe less resourceful than the items listed above? What if we’re really adept at avoidance? What if we’re polished perfect in procrastination? What if we’re determinedly decided everything is difficult, and therefore make everything difficult?
The answer is, just as we learnt to do all these things – we can learn to undo them.
Whilst there are techniques and strategies out there that can be used in this way – I’m going to give you a brief run down of a very simple, yet effective method you could use to begin loosening the grip the old behaviour may have on you.
Decide, first what behaviour you would rather have instead – the reason for this is that you can’t just remove an old behaviour and be left with a vacuum, and empty space – we may have all heard the phrase – “nature abhors a vacuum“, so we’re not going to have any abhorrations happening here thank you!
Next, look at what secondary gains the old behaviour may be giving you. Really look at them, see how many ways that behaviour in some other way, may aid you – you may remember one of my posts from a few days ago, where I would get frustrated, and hey presto – the lawn would get a mow! Is there a way you could keep those gains, whilst removing the original, maybe less than resourceful behaviour? (Here’s a tip – there normally is – so if you think you can’t see any other way – take a step backwards and upwards, as you might be too close to the puzzle, and have another think).
Then, just let this sit a while. Think of all those times that old behaviour begins to kick in and run on autopilot without you even noticing – what happens just before it kicks in? What do you see? smell? hear? feel? taste?
What would you need to give you a nudge at this point to help you be aware the no longer wanted behaviour is about to start?
Now, imagine the scenario – whether it’s biting your nails, smoking, compulsive eating, avoiding stuff, drinking, absolutely whatever the behaviour is, is just about to run – BUT, this time, you have your nudge in place, and your nudge happens. Then the new behaviour kicks in, and notice now how that feels as the new behaviour runs, and you become aware of your choice in choosing that new behaviour?! Notice how good it feels as you run through the event, and once the event is finished – how fantastic does that feel now?
After you’ve done it once, do it again – imagine it all over again. And then again, and then again – however many times your favourite number is – that’s how many times to run this imagining!
Practise makes magic happen. Change transforms us from ordinary, to extraordinary.
We all have the ability to practise our magic – how many ways do we actually use it and become aware of the choices we have to use it now?