â€œWhat you focus on grows.â€Â Of all the simple, direct, and life changing concepts Dr. Maria Hunt taught meâ€¦this one resonated so deeply, so easily, so effectively for me.Â Moving from hindering to helpful, stuck to free, same old, same old to authentically me is a real life changer.
A Beginnerâ€™s Mind
Years ago, after a long, tiring day of yard work, packing, and final visits with neighbors I sprawled out on the living room floor to catch a few hours of much needed sleep.Â After a few minutes I became aware that my autopilot brain was narrating â€œIâ€™m coldâ€¦gosh, itâ€™s cold in hereâ€¦why is it so cold in hereâ€¦it wasnâ€™t cold outside todayâ€¦how can it be cold in here?â€
In my state of exhaustion I felt no energy to get up, turn on the furnace, or walk through the cold night air.Â Then I suddenly remembered â€˜what I focus on growsâ€™â€¦I must be focused on â€˜coldâ€™ because I just heard that word numerous times in my thoughts.
I smiled through my exhaustion at the realization that I had all the tools within me to change my focus, thereby changing my outcome.Â I wouldnâ€™t have to get up or even move!Â This was an exciting moment.
I ran my thoughts through a logical cycle.Â What I focus on grows.Â Iâ€™m focused on cold.Â What do I want?Â I want to be warm.Â I scanned my body to find the seeds of warmthâ€¦and located two small bits of warmth, my upper arm and my thigh, both snug on the floor with trapped body heat.
I focused on those spots, attentive to the sensation of that warmth, thinking of word pictures to grow that warmth.Â â€œI love warmthâ€¦this warmth feels like sunshineâ€¦.thank you Lord for this warmthâ€¦.â€
It took all of about 30 seconds for the warmth to spread throughout my entire body and I dropped off to sleep instantlyâ€¦without having to get up, turn the furnace on, or add another blanket.
A Simple Practice Evolves
Later, after moving further north, a bitter cold winter arrived.Â I had many, many, many moments to practice focusing on warmth to cut the chill from my body.Â I practiced so much that I achieved warmth in about 5 seconds without otherwise disrupting my current being and doing.Â My practice had evolved to key words and a focus on the warmth of my exhaling breath.
Recently I was in a restaurant, sleeveless, with the air conditioning blowing on me.Â I had a slight, yet, not uncomfortable chill.Â I suddenly experienced two things I had not done in yearsâ€¦drinking a slushy margarita and getting brain freeze.
In that split second when brain freeze hit, my brain suddenly blurted forth â€˜warm, warm, warm, warm, warm, warm, warmâ€™ and immediately both the brain freeze and the chill on my arms left me.Â Just like that.Â I didnâ€™t even have to locate any warmth to focus on it, the word â€˜warmâ€™ came rushing forth repetitively from my brain, and poof, warm appeared, brain freeze and chill disappeared!
I laughed out loud in that moment at the realization that my practice had evolved into my autopilot reaction â€“ my automatic way of being and doing!Â We are amazing creatures, people!Â We already have within us all the tools we need to live our best lifeâ€¦what you focus on growsâ€¦what are you growing?