Every thought trains the brain, and therefore by simply thinking a thought the mind is conditioned. In youth the brain is taught how and what to think later in life.
Training the Brain
The brain is conditioned through the regularity of thought. The more often a thought is…thought…the more often it will pop into a person’s head unannounced.
Like a hiker in the woods, the mind tends to travel down certain pathways. As a trail is followed more often, the traversed path grows deeper and wider; at the same time, the unexplored routes grow over and become less obvious. Eventually the known path, the chosen thought, becomes the only obvious option.
This is what gives one the ability, over time, to play beautifully complicated music without conscious effort. It is also why people grow fond of each other, even seeming enemies, as they are humanized over the years.
Even if something is uncomfortable, like a thorn in a finger, if it serves any extensive mental purpose it will become familiar. The brain’s greatest asset and limitation, adaptability, will cause anybody to think about (to miss) any thorn that has been in place for a year.
The physiological consequences of a thought are identical, regardless of whether it is good or bad – familiarization is facilitated no matter what. Such is the habit of thought.
While a simple network may be capable of retrogressing, the mind is not capable of forgetting a thought. Every intellection and every emotion is forever recorded by chemicals in the brain. A person’s identity is the culmination of every thought they have every had.
The Flow of Thought
The excitement of neural pathways naturally leads to indirect neural excitement. As the brain is trained how to think, associations are cemented. Given enough time, wiring within the brain makes choice obsolete.
With age, words like ‘cancer’ may unintentionally pop into the mind when the word ‘fear’ is thought, or ‘love’ when ‘good’ is thought. This is true of all words.
The words of a thought exist emotionally. Some words, such as shield or pillow, may have neutral-positive associations. Two seemingly unrelated thoughts on the same emotional level are just as likely to be thought or spoken at a given time – the choice between them is determined by the context of the moment.
The magnitude of thoughts are determined by the current emotional level of the individual. When happy, a person may stub their toe and think how lucky they are that it wasn’t a harder impact; when unhappy, that same person may think how unlucky they are to have not avoided it altogether (they may even blame God).
Just as a person’s current thought is influenced by their emotional level, so too is the flow of abstraction. The mind must go through stages to get from a state of happiness to one of depression, and by being in a genuinely happy state the mind is automatically not in a depressed one.
As seemingly obvious as this sounds, many voluntarily put themselves in a state of fear by watching horror movies or positions of lack by watching tragedies. These same people are the ones who go to bed on that night fearing the dark or crying themselves to sleep.
Thinking Positively Changes Lives
By thinking a happy thought now, even when the tendency may be to grumble or complain, people can paint brighter futures for themselves. Not only will their thoughts be happier, their actions and outlook (being affected by what they think) will open their life to new and invigorating experiences which they deem happy.
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The Power of Positive Secrets: The Benefits of Thinking Positively was originally published to Detox of South Florida’s Blog