Reticular Activating System

We tend to go through life unconsciously!  We really do…

When you really think about it, we don’t make that many decisions during our days.  We tend to just do things automatically.

This week, I’ll sleep in five beds.  I’ll be in four cities which means four hotel rooms.  Then I’ll be back home Thursday night, and I’ll sleep in my own bed.

Every night, I will get in bed on the same side.  Every night!  I don’t know why this is, but it’s been that way for for as long as I can remember. 

Every night, my wife gets in bed on the “other” side, but I sure wouldn’t chance that–Something bad might happen!  As a matter of fact, I never even think about it.  I just automatically get in bed on “my” side.  It’s what I do.  That’s a great example of how unconsciously we do things throughout our days.

Because we are “unconscious,” most of us never get specific about what we want in life.  We just hope that it all ends up well.

But there’s a neat thing called the Reticular Activating System.  You may have never heard of this term, but I’m sure that you’ve used it.  Let me explain.

Let’s say that you decide to go and buy a new car or truck.  You decide upon the make, model, and color that you want.  Have you noticed that when you do this, everywhere you go you see the car.  If you’re driving down the highway, you’ll see two or three of them.  If you pull into the Walmart parking lot, you’ll see at least five of them!

They were always there, but you never saw them before you consciously thought of the car.

Life’s the same way.

When you set a goal and write the goal down on a piece of paper, you’re engaging the reticular activating system.  The chances of the goal actually happening geometrically increases once the goal is on paper.

You may wonder why this is.  Here’s the answer:

What you think about comes into your life. . .

Another example:

It’s getting colder outside.  Let’s say that you put on an old, winter jacket, and you look down at it and say to yourself, “I need a new winter jacket.”  And then the next day you say, “This thing’s starting to look old.  I need a new one.”  If you say that to yourself four or five days in a row, I can almost guarantee you that you’ll find yourself in a clothing store looking at winter jackets.

But if you don’t think about winter jackets, you’ll never look at winter jackets.

What you think about comes into your life. . .

So, what do you want?  I want you to write down something that you really want right now in your life.  Go into details and be very specific.

Maybe it’s a new job.  Maybe it’s better health.

Maybe it’s a new winter jacket.  :)

When you write it down, you’ll be triggering the reticular activating system!

Now let’s watch and see what happens…

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  1. Ted Hartzell
    Ted Hartzell01-25-2012

    Hi Robert,

    I am taking a group of us through this goal setting process for a major development and ministerial redirection at our church. You may remember the mixed use development and what it will mean to our community and church body.

    I am also using this process in a mentoring relationship.

    I appreciate your ministry toward our goal setting process.

    • Robert Mallon
      Robert Mallon01-25-2012

      Glad to hear from you my friend. If I can help you in any way, please let me know.
      God bless you…

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