Mary Shores is the author of Conscious Communications, a step-by-step guide to harnessing the power of your words to change your mind, your choices, and your life. She joins the show today to talk about how neurophysiology, our words, and other people’s behavior affect our ability to create the life we want to live. Today’s conversation is about how and where to make small changes that get us closer to our ideal lives and selves. Mary has been involved in many things in her professional career – she’s been a CEO, runs a debt collection service, and has been a student in personal development and self-improvement.
[5:05] – Many people have learned to expect instant transformation – we read a book and suddenly everything is going to change. In most cases, the things we need to change are going to play out over a period of time. Mary’s personal journey put her in a position to expect this instant change.
[6:53] – Mary was a weekend workshop warrior, but what she began to notice about these events and the people at them, is that they are often riding on the emotions of the event. These events are productive and encouraged, but it’s important to remember that the real transformation will occur in small changes that happen over time after the event.
[8:00] – Charlie and Mary discuss some of the ways neurophysiology can affect these feelings of transformation. Mirror neurons can cause us to feel what the people around us are feeling (whether positive or negative). Mary talks about a phenomenon that whenever we’re in proximity to other people, our brain waves begin to wire in a pattern together.
[12:15] – In philosophy, there’s a topic called The Great Indignities of Science. Charlie briefly discusses these, and how these can help shape the way we think about our place in the world. Science can be very humbling, and there are still many things we are learning about science that will continue to shape and define the way we think and feel.
[13:30] – Mary talks about the monkey experiment that was how they discovered mirror neurons. When the monkey saw a person eat a peanut, their responses measured the same as if the monkey itself was eating the peanut. The 100th Monkey Effect describes a scenario where one group of monkeys started washing potatoes because they enjoyed the taste, and once that number reached a certain critical mass, then monkeys on another island started to wash their potatoes without any instruction. This happens with the human mind too – once a certain collective of humans start to think a certain way, another group of humans will simultaneously start to have these thoughts.
[17:15] – There are phenomena that we know happen, even if we don’t know how or why they happen. But along with what we don’t know, there are things we do know about the brain. We can take the things that we do know are true and apply them to our lives, and have results based on the knowledge we do have. Mary talks about how she changed her philosophy in her debt collection services based on what she knew would trigger people. She came up with a “do not say” list for her office: no, not, can’t, won’t, however, and unfortunately. In the office they replace that list with words that inspire confidence and trust with the client, and triggers the opposite system in the client (parasympathetic nervous system).
[20:25] – When Mary decided she wanted to write a personal development book, she started to research the effect in communications with other people, as well as the effect it has on ourselves when we replace these words for more positivity. We are primed for certain types of experiences, but making changes in our words can cause these experiences to shift.
[22:30] – Our responses are more than just a brain response, even more than a nervous system response. We’re triggered all day every day by things that keep us in a low level fight-or-flight, which means there is less of our body’s energy going to the brain for thinking of solutions. We become over-reactive people. In Mary’s debt collection service, their goal is to get clients to a place where they are neutral or ready to be receptive to a solution. Once they feel okay, then they can start talking about the solution.
[25:10] – What are the ways we can apply the principles Mary uses in her business to our own lives? Words is one of the ways we can become more satisfied people and live meaningful, and happy lives. Shut off the valve of negative words to yourself; become aware of the words you say to yourself and how they’ve shaped your “barrier beliefs.” The way out of this is to invest in yourself, and give yourself the evidence to disprove your barrier beliefs. Mary shares her example of how she came to write her first book by overcoming her thought that she was not a writer.
[30:15] – Growing up, we’re programmed with cultural and family of origin beliefs, and our education takes some of our natural human instincts away from us. The reality is, we understand neurological pathways and are in control of the programming we set for ourselves. We have the power to change any of the beliefs in our mind, we just have to start from somewhere. Start by creating daily practices where you are deciding on a new thought or belief in your subconscious. Creating new pathways will be easier than trying to get rid of the old ones.
[34:20] - While we are capable of overriding our neuro processes, it’s not what we automatically do. It takes work to decide on a new thought process, especially when it comes to how we deal with and react to the people around us. We can change some of our initial reactions by being aware of those moments and ask what’s really going on and how we can make the situation better for the people around us.
[40:00] - We can take these ideas about our initial reactions or what we’re “supposed to do,” and apply it to something relevant in our life. We don’t necessarily have to follow the trajectory that society has sort of set out for us. In fact, not following the status quo can help us find our true purpose. Dial back into what you love and what you’re good at, and feed your strengths.
[45:15] - Mary is an example that we don’t have to follow rote behavior and the path that society laid out for us. She talks about growing up and taking care of her daughter that passed away, and how she was able to recover from that and start her own business at 24.
[48:30] - There are different ways to show up and be in practices of transformation. Sometimes it’s external from a personal development teacher, or it can be internal and self-driven. It’s important to develop the internal engine, because when you’re doing it from a place of empowerment, what you create will be so much more.
[51:10] - There are many different ways that we can be working on ourselves. Everything is a piece that goes to installing better programming in your subconscious. As you continue working on habits, you have to keep practicing things over and over as you become more accomplished and a more powerful self in the world.
[53:35] - Mary has a Core 4 Goals. If you try to take on everything you want to change, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. The focus of the Core 4 are the four things you need to do to accomplish a larger goal (for Mary, writing her book). They help guide and prioritize your actions and your energies. As an example, the Core 4 for Mary’s Business are: sales, industry involvement, custom trainings, and using their branding. They say ‘yes’ to things that support those four, and they say ‘no’ to the things that are outside of those four.
[57:30] - Mary’s invitation for listeners is to think about the concept that everything you say and do, is either creating a deeper connection or it’s driving a disconnection. How will you let the words you use create the life you want to live?
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