Parking road marking with concrete wallIf our focus is only on staying between the lines and the wall right in front of us, then we will miss the beauty in the sky above.

As humans, we love creating expectations (aka, putting up walls) and having a “picture” in one’s mind of what the future should look like. But, how often does reality measure up to this preconceived “picture”? Unless you’re a psychic, it is probably not very accurate and does not fit as nicely as we would like between those two white lines we have created. Our brain can be vulnerable to expectations and miss important information as demonstrated in this video by Daniel Simon.

What can I do to decrease my “blindness” and be more open to success?

  1. Relax and BREATHE. Under stress, our vision literally narrows. Slowing down and engaging in several minutes of belly breathing slows down and reverses the stress response.
  2. Check your expectations at the door. Preconceived ideas tend to create biases that are more likely to hinder rather than help us. Expectations focus on outcome or results, which can cause us to miss important information because we are focused on the end.
  3. Relax and BREATHE. Our brain needs oxygen to function properly and it receives adequate amounts of oxygen when we engage in belly breathing. How much oxygen does the brain need? 25% of the air that we breathe goes to our head.
  4. Engage in a process-oriented approach. Focus on what we can control and the process. As mentioned earlier, our expectations can often get in our way and we can miss other information. We also cannot control what others say, do, or think. However, we can control what we say, do, and think.
  5. Relax and BREATHE. To be open to new opportunities, we need to use a “fresh” mindset or perspective. If we “know” what is going to happen, then that will happen. If we want a different outcome, we need to use a different part of the brain (higher functioning part of the brain). In order for this to occur, we need to relax, breathe, and let ourselves suspend judgement and expectation.

“There is nothing in a caterpillar that tells you it is going to be a butterfly.”
~ Richard Buckminster Fuller