If Elon Musk, the real life inspiration for the Tony Stark character in Iron Man, says that there’s going to be life on Mars within his life-time, it’s going to happen.

Screen Shot 2016-01-05 at 23.40.21.pngYour new years resolution may not be as bold or as stella as Mr Musk’s but look at him through the lens of behavioural insights and there is a lot we can learn from this tireless young inventor and entrepreneur (who created, Pay Pal, Tesla Motors and SpaceX), about how to make our new years resolutions happen.

Have a look at his answer to a very simple question about life on Mars and see what it reveals about how he sets about achieving his goals:https://youtu.be/sD6mBtr-zLg

When he was a child in South Africa he was afraid of the dark, but in a sign of what was to come he was able to change that fear by simple changing the way he look at it.

 “I realized that dark was simply the absence of photons in the visible spectrum and thought it was silly to be afraid of the absence of something. So I was no longer afraid of the dark.”

A startling truth about how we human beings work is revealed in young Musk’s realization. Whether we realise it or not we actual create for ourselves the world we live in, and the experiences we have in it. We therefor also create what it is possible for us to achieve within our world. I sum this thought up in my sessions by saying that ‘where you choose to place our awareness dictates our reality’.

For example, do you think you’re lucky or unlucky? Whichever one you think you are perpetuates its self, becoming your truth and your reality. Why, because we have evolved to look for all the evidence that confirms our beliefs and ignore all that which contradicts it.

This isn’t just the art of motivation and positive thinking at play. The science behind the testing of new and experimental drugs shows us that the way our biology and physiology respond is fundamental altered by what we think we are aware of.

Ask yourself now how much a tub of 100 generic Ibuprofen costs. Now ask yourself how much a sleeve of 12 Nurofen costs. What’s the difference between the two apart form some Screen Shot 2016-01-05 at 23.51.19.pngfancy branding, 88 tablet
s and about £2? The answer is of course nothing but we all know people for whom only the Nurofen will work! And thanks to the wonders of the placebo effect, they are not wrong (but they are a little poorer!)

The placebo is one of the most consistently successful drugs ever tested and I’ll take a deeper dive into this in a later blog, but for now lets get back to Mars, Elon Musk and how we can use the placebo effect to make our new years resolutions actually happen for once.

Musk learnt at an early age that by changing the way you looked at something you changed what was possible. PayPal became possible when Musk changed how he looked at money, seeing that it truth it was just and entry in a database. Cash, cheques and credit cards were needlessly slowing up the process. Why not make the entry in the database at the point of purchase!

By choosing where to place his awareness and how he thinks about the world around him he is able to create his own reality into which he can then live and achieve the goals he sets himself. Time and again this realization has opened up new fields of possibilities for him that would other wise have gone unnoticed.

Screen Shot 2016-01-05 at 23.58.36What’s his secret, how does he do that? Wouldn’t that be great to know?! Wouldn’t it also be surprising (and wonderful) to discover that in fact you already know and you already do it. Here’s how.

Remember the last time you decided on which new car you were going to buy. You had studied every detail, pictured yourself in it, chosen the colour and the interior, you might have even already decided what outfit your going to wear when you go to pick it up. Isn’t it strange that you started to notice the same model of car all over the place? How does that happen? Has the manufacturer somehow read your mind and flooded you local area as if to convince you that it’s the right choice?

What’s actually happened is that by powerfully visualising the new car and yourself in it, although the actual purchase is some way of, you have created a powerful network of neurons that is ready to be triggered at any moment.

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With these neural networks in place the briefest subconscious glimpse of something related to you new car, grabs your awareness by the scruff of its consciousness and says look there’s another one…wow! Its called pattern recognition and we are hard wired at a primal level to respond to it.

Now imagine that rather than thinking about, visualizing and vicariously experiencing a new car, you spend time thinking about, visualizing and vicariously experiencing the New Year’s resolution you have set yourself. Start to do with now, start to groove out those neural networks into a self-fulfilling road map that leads to the inevitable successful realising of you resolution.

Do this, and along the way, just like all those cars that appeared in your local area, all of the possibilities and opportunities (that are in truth already there) will become apparent to you and available for you. They will be the stepping-stones and points of inspiration that will help you achieve you goal.

Do this and you will do so much more than achieve a New Years resolution. You will discover an amazing truth about we human beings. We really do create our own reality and it is a reality that is dictated by where we choose to place our awareness.

So what will you do with this knowledge? The choice us yours!

Happy New Year.

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