In this episode I start to explain how your brain is acting as a filter for information, and is giving you what it thinks you need to support your current thinking, beliefs and to exactly what your current focus is.
I explain how and why on journeys, I notice every yellow car that I and my children see. Do we have an obsession with yellow cars, do we particular like yellow cars, well no, we don't, but due to a game played by my children we notice even single one!
We have engaged something called our Reticular Activating System.
Think back to the last time you bought a car, and before you did, perhaps you looked into it, you researched it and decided on your preferred make and model or make a models and maybe even a preferred colour.
When you went out after that on the roads, how many did you see?
Suddenly everyone has one, but they were always there, Hello Reticular Activating System.
It's got quite a few functions, but one of them is filtering.
It's filtering the same way that online searches and social media platforms do.
Your conscious brain processes about 40 pieces of information a second, on a conscious level, and your subconscious brain processes around 11 million pieces, 11 million pieces of information a second. You may see different figures reported, I've seen much higher. The point I'm making is the difference between the two figures and whatever figures you look at the difference is huge.
So how does your brain decide what stays in the subconscious? And don't forget that's stored for future reference? And how does it decide what is directed to that valued space in the conscious.
Social media has tried to emulate this with its algorithm. It will suggest more of what you think about, the feed suggestions of what you may like is based on what you like now.
All of the images, colours, sounds, tastes, feels around you retaken in. There is so much information that it only lets through, and what it allows in is what it thinks is important to you.
How does it decide? it filters based on what you are focusing on. its as though you are being given tings to support your current situation, thoughts and beliefs.
If we look at this specifically with regard to fertility, if you believe you won't get pregnant, does that mean you won't get pregnant?
Well, not necessarily. But you will be shown information to support that, you will see the negative supporting information.
What changes after that is your reaction to that information. And we know how the emotions can trigger a reaction that changes our fertility. So we know that if we exposed a group of people within different circumstances to the same situation or fact they would respond differently.
What are you focusing on? What is yourconscious mind giving attention to, for a large part of your day?
What negative self talk and labelling is going on? If anything,
I'm not good at this.
This won't happen.
And you're in this circle of self talk, proof, belief.
The belief leads to more self talk, you're given more proof, your belief gets stronger.
And we know that the negative emotions that result or can result from this negative spiral fuel our stress system, adrenaline and cortisol are within the body, which will negatively, can negatively impact your fertility and you've heard me talk about this before. Because if you are surrounded by Tigers continually or at really regular intervals, and there are no or insufficient safety windows for your body to reset, your fertility will be affected.
It is the emotional response that is key and this powered the RAS, the strength of your focus, the regularity of your focus.
You may see a pregnancy announcement and think, when will it ever happen to me, it's not fair. And these emotions can then rollercoaster onwards and they can lead to feelings of anger and jealousy. This is then often followed by guilt for actually feeling that way.
Others might think that will be me soon and actually start to plan how they will announce theirs. why, well we come back to events that shaped core belief, past emotional triggers or just a different disposition, but we can work with it.
It's the biological design of the body to shut down non essential systems and focus on your survival. And you might not think your negative self talk is a tiger. But your body doesn't say oh, well we'll do this amount of adrenaline because this is a real danger. We won't do as much adrenaline because she's thinking about it.
Your body cannot tell the difference between what is real and what is imagined. And your stress response will happen to thoughts and emotions. So we can reset the reticular activating system to look for the positive.
I'm losing weight.
I'm great at this
but you've got Believe it, it's got to ring true.
So you're not just going to say something that you don't believe. And let's look at that a bit more. So the things that affect the RAS are:
- opening your awareness
Stick with me here. If you think I'm going a little bit Woo. Remember, there's science behind everything.
opening your awareness
This is demonstrated by the yellow car. Perhaps looking at positive fertility stories, or refocusing and reframing away from infertility and failed fertility, to more positive aspects.
Now, what we've got to consider here, again, it's your reaction to the stories that's key. So if you're looking at positive fertility stories and thinking well that's never going to happen to me, you RAS will give you info to support it. Can you just become positive? Maybe you can think more positively about the stories, or perhaps you can't.
Maybe finding where that fear, worry or lack control comes from is necessary, and it's something I work with many clients with at a deeper level.
Establishing appropriate affirmations is key. That's another thing we can look at. Because some affirmations aren't right for some individuals and they can trigger past emotions. And some they just don't believe, you have to mean and believe what you are saying. And you also have to want to do it. So it's not any affirmations you know, you could chant them off.
They might not fit right with you. So I would always say if you're looking at set affirmations read them. and feel what you feel in response to it? If it feels good, then go with it. If it just doesn't feel right, it's not the right one for you. And you can dig deeper and find out the why or you could just not use that one. So, for example,
I know what my body needs to work effectively.
And in doing that you've come away from the word fertility. So you're using some reframing there as well. You've come away from that word, it's not that whole focus,
or perhaps I choose to eat to support my fertility or I choose to eat to support my body work for you.
It in these emotions that come up, that we start to notice common emotional triggers that occur in a lot of people. And the big ones are, "why should I have to?" "other people don't have to and they get pregnant". That's triggering something from a long time ago,
This is something that I work with my clients on that we can find that trigger relatively easily and in a quick time, and it can change that whole emotional response to just relating to fertility to to many aspects of life.
At some point towards the end of the day, most days, I list 10 things that I was thankful for in that day. And they're not huge things.
Im not talking about manifesting money, a bughouse or a super car, although you could do that too I gues.
It's not health, family, a roof over my head. They're small things specific to that day, and it's something I encourage my clients and I'm going to encourage you to do this too. Sometimes I write them down. Sometimes I just list them off in my head.
You may find it really really hard at first. I searched and searched initially.
So they can be things like, I got a perfect parking space today. I was on time for school pick up. The supermarket had my favourite snack on special offer. I had an extra hour today when my one o'clock appointment had to cancel, there is a little bit of reframing in that one, as well.
And after some time, your reticular activating system starts to show you things clearly that you can be thankful for. And you start to think, Oh, that's great. That's great. I've got this and you feel better, like things are going your way, more positive.
When we are being negative, we are being shown information to support that belief. So we can't suddenly become positive. But if you change the filter, if you change the algorithm if you like, then you'll start to reframe, you'll start to just see more positive things.
One of the things that is, is really, really key on on an individual's fertility journey is when you hear about other people getting pregnant.
Now, I am NOT trying to tell you here that you HAVE to be positive. But I am suggesting that some simple reframes could be of benefit and if as I said earlier, you're triggered. It may be that that past trigger whatever it is, may need some work.
So, you will have heard me talk before about stepping out of the fertility focus, to refrain to use health as a goal to take the pressure off to turn around the control aspect or this feeling of lack of control. This is a great reframe and can work towards easing the all consuming nature of fertility. If the focus shifts to health, to feeling better, to getting fitter, to reducing toxins for your health.
I have spoken before about how the language we use affects us and featured reframing here too
Yellow car: nip nip, no returns
Have a go, go out and play yellow car nip nip and see how many there are, unless of course, you yourself have a yellow car, because chances are your filters already set for you to spot them regularly because they're not the most common colour that you would see try it with orange cars or a different colour car.
If you're not a driver, if you're out and about so here in the UK at the moment, it's quite common. If you're looking in the garden you might see a Robin that you'll see more if you look for them. And you'll see more if you notice them if you say out loud I don't know if you'd say Robin Robin nip nip no return!
if you are lucky enough be in warmer climbs, butterflies, lizards, give it a go
What I wanted to do with this is to just raise your awareness towards how this system can work for you.
And if you want any further information or you want to chat about any help with this at all, then just drop me a line at Kat@fertilityrewire.com or put something in the comments and, it'd be great to hear just how many other cars you're seeing