At the time of writing, another New Year is just two weeks away.
So I thought I’d share one thing I failed for years to understand.
And which was immensely costly not to ‘get’.
I believe that really ‘getting’ this is the ‘game changer’ so many people are looking for.
It’s understanding the difference between knowledge and wisdom.
For years I tried (and paid) but failed…
To gain wisdom.
To help me shift my business and life as I wanted to.
I worked with some wise coaches and teachers.
I read hundreds of books. Many of which were amazingly insightful.
I had personal development coming out of my ears.
I took action, worked hard and built a reasonable business.
(And was blessed to work with some talented individuals along the way).
But the changes I wanted were often slow or elusive.
And felt hard-fought.
Until it eventually landed with me….
Wisdom cannot be taught!
It can only be directly experienced.
Call me a slow learner but somehow I’d missed what was suddenly so obvious.
I’d failed to grasp that when wisdom is either spoken or written down; it is no longer wisdom…
It’s just knowledge or information.
And although it may evoke something within us..
It doesn’t change our lives as we might wish it to..
Any more than a book on how to drive a car enables us to drive.
Or a recipe makes us a great cook.
I’d failed to understand that all a teacher or coach – wise or other wise – can really do is point us towards wisdom.
They can’t ever truly help us know it.
Only we can do this.
But unfortunately, when it comes to being pointed…
The vast majority of teachings we’re exposed to – through our upbringing, education and in later life – point us in the wrong direction.
Or have us focusing on entirely the wrong level.
Meaning we focus on addressing symptoms and effects.
Meaning we mess in the middle.
Instead of on the primary cause of our results.
Symptoms may include.. disappointing results, confidence, resilience, productivity, procrastination, decision-making or not knowing what it is we really want…
Symptoms definitely include our assumptions, beliefs, thoughts, feelings, habits, behaviours and actions.
We may also believe we need to adjust our strategy or skills or find more time or money.
So no wonder it’s so hard to get the kind of shifts we really want.
No wonder we often spin in circles and fail to solve the problems we want to solve.
“No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it. – Albert Einstein
If we go up a level from the symptoms, we get a step closer to the actual cause….
A divided mind.
The existence of a conflict between the desires in our heart and the assumptions and beliefs in our mind.
Many of which are beneath the level of our conscious awareness.
But which are nonetheless giving rise to our thoughts, feelings and behaviours and dictating our results.
At source, what causes a divided mind is the denial of our true nature… and the corresponding constriction of our innate, divine, intuitive intelligence…
…in favour of valuing and prizing our rational mind and our intellect and reason.
“The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honours the servant and has forgotten the gift.” – Albert Einstein
The one major reason ‘working’ on a growth mindset typically doesn’t help most people is because they make it an intellectual endeavour!
Meaning they may end up ‘knowing’ more and may respond differently but ultimately they’re still symptom focused and therefore no wiser, so results don’t change all that much.
I know that journey only too well!
“No answers can be found in the mind.”- U.G. Krishnamurti
Valuing the intellectual, rational mind over and above our heart and intuition is a function of our culture and education system….
….and sadly it leads to many of us becoming stuck in the prison of our perceptions and settling for results we know are so far below what we’re capable of, deserve… and desire.
“Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” – Steve Jobs
Valuing and being led by the intellect (and not the heart) means many people go through life metaphorically ‘rearranging the furniture’ from one year to the next.
When what their heart desires and can so easily and swiftly lead them to is a new room in a new building with entirely new furniture too!
To solve the costly problem of a divided mind, we must shift to use our other, infinitely more powerful ‘operating system’.
The one we as humans are designed to run on and be led by.
Meaning we shift to being led by our true nature and intuition and not by the rational mind or by reason.
This is something we naturally do as young children until we’re taught and learn not to.
And our intellect and reason then become the most fundamental obstacles to achieving our goals and living our dreams.
They condition our desires using filters of perception and using what we believe we already know, place limitations upon what’s possible for us and deny our innate and natural wisdom….
And our heart, true nature and outcomes suffer accordingly.
We suffer the gap between what our true self – symbolised by the heart – desires and can easily lead us to and what the mind believes and wants.
Wisdom is understanding that the only way to create a real shift in our life is to open our heart and to shift the feeling of “I” before we see or experience the change.
To be led by intuition which is before the mind and which is free of its various false constructs.
Because it’s not what we know or do that we get to see the expression of in our world, it’s who we are being that’s expressed!
Wisdom is understanding our intellectual mind will resist our heart leading at all costs and will do almost anything to prevent this.
One reason being that the intellect goes by our senses and it only makes sense to feel after an outcome or when there’s the evidence to justify the feeling; not before then.
For the intellect, it’s not safe to become emotionally involved before there’s reason to be!
The entire game of life is designed to be played ‘inside-out’ .
It’s how it works whether we understand it or other-wise.
Consciously playing the game inside-out is the only way to win at it.
We’re just educated and conditioned to believe it works ‘outside-in’ …….which is why most people are at war with the game and often with themselves.
I was at war with myself for decades!
To truly win, we must wake up and realise it’s not about effort and mindset, it’s all about heartset.
To win we must reawaken our imagination and learn why it’s safe to trust it once again.
But here’s the kicker….
Until we allow ourselves to experience this truth, we can never know the wisdom of it. It requires a leap into the unknown…..
And to do this, we must get past our intellect. It hates the unknown and it’s the gatekeeper to our dreams.
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself and you are the easiest person to fool. Richard P. Feynman.