In today’s fast-paced world, stress and anxiety have become the norm for many people. It seems like we are constantly bombarded with stimuli that trigger our fight or flight response, leaving us feeling overwhelmed and drained.
But what if we told you that you have the power to change this? What if we told you that you are what you focus on and that by changing your focus, you can change your experience of yourself and the world around you?
At the heart of this idea is the concept of neuroplasticity, which refers to the brain’s ability to change and adapt throughout our lives. Every time we engage with a thought or feeling, we reinforce neural pathways in our brain, making it more likely that we will have the same thought or feeling again in the future. This is why focusing on stress and anxiety can keep us locked into those patterns of thought and feeling, making it difficult to break free.
But by creating some headspace, we can begin to shift our focus and create new, healthier neural pathways. This can be as simple as taking a moment to pause and breathe, or as complex as engaging in a mindfulness practice or therapy. By slowing down and regulating our nervous system, we can move up the ladder from the dorsal vagal to the sympathetic to the parasympathetic system, allowing us to access a state of flourish and flow where we can connect with others and tap into our creativity and potential.
Of course, this is easier said than done. It can be challenging to break free from the grip of stress and anxiety, especially when our brains are wired to respond in certain ways. But by taking ownership of our headspace and consciously choosing what we want to focus on, we can begin to rewire our brains and create a more positive experience of ourselves and the world.
So, what would you like your headspace to be filled with? What thoughts and feelings would support your well-being and help you thrive? By answering these questions and consciously choosing where to focus your attention, you can begin to create new, healthier neural pathways that support your growth and well-being.
This idea has important implications for our work lives as well. As leaders, we are often focused on leading others and driving success in our organisations. But before we can lead others, we need to lead ourselves. By running the business of our own heads and taking care of our own well-being, we can be better team members and more effective leaders.
In conclusion, the idea that you are what you focus on is a powerful reminder of the importance of mindfulness and self-care. By creating some headspace and consciously choosing where to focus our attention, we can break free from the grip of stress and anxiety and create new, healthier patterns of thought and feeling. So take a moment to pause, breathe, and put your attention on your intention. Your brain (and your well-being) will thank you for it.