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Defibrillating the senses - jolting yourself out of apathy

When you get knocked down, often repeatedly, you can use this as impetus to spring back up, make adjustments and show that your spirit is not broken. Life is like a series of opponents that help you test your resolve, and improve. Welcome the opportunity to spar in order to grow! Then you will not be anxious about failure or setbacks and welcome what life throws at you!

In my blogs I put forward ideas from Adventure Psychology to help people figure a way to thrive in uncertain times, and make sense of the crazy world. By adopting an Adventure Mindset (I'll gradually reveal how) you can approach the challenges of life with an adaptable resolve, and embrace the chaos knowing full well that it's a wild ride so you might as well enjoy it!

“A good old fashioned shake-up can work wonders to shift us out of gear, rejig the connections, and put us back together with a more efficient and effective system that can operate more optimally."

Life punches you in the face - get back up and give it what for!!

A good old shock to the system is sometimes needed to galvanise a response to adversity. If we plod along with things always seeming to go smoothly, we don’t really grow or accomplish what we could.

I like to call this ‘defibrillating the senses’ (or cognition more to point of fact).

A defibrillator of course ‘shocks’ the heart, STOPPING it in order to jolt it from an irregular pattern back into a regular function that sustains life.

Likewise, certain traumas, surprises, unexpected events can jolt our brains and mindsets out of their fixed ways of operating. This is important to get out of deeply ingrained ‘grooves’ and habitual patterns of thought that can hold us back. Or in fact can blind us to reality – given that our reality is based on our expectations of what the world is or should be. It can be a difficult process to come to terms with what the world actually ‘is’, bereft of expectations that we foist upon it.

A good old fashioned shake-up can work wonders to shift us out of gear, rejig the connections, and put us back together with a more efficient and effective system that can operate more optimally.

Like a punch in the face.

Now I am not advocating going and provoking strangers into walloping you. But having taken many punches to the face over the years, I get it. In order to fight back in life, sometimes you need to take a few licks. It provokes an arousal response. I’ve done a lot of sparring (boxing/kickboxing). I was always a bit too ‘nice’, holding back. Until I got belted. And it was time to now ‘not be nice’.

Then I would switch gear, and come back swinging. Or more precisely come back focused, energised, aggressive but controlled.

Whereas early on I might have feared getting into such a confrontation, of getting hit, I eventually realised that it was not the taking of punishment I was afraid of. I was more afraid of losing control. Of fighting back like a man possessed. In short afraid of going all out. And realising my potential.

I carry this philosophy into life, learning that its not the punishment, the disappointments, the let-downs, or indeed the failures that bother me. Indeed I now almost welcome the disappointment, being well accustomed to this.

In fact, when you get struck down you might need a moment to recompose yourself, to take a breather before bouncing back. Take stock. A quick evaluation of the situation might require an adjustment of posture or strategy. Then you bounce back to your feet with renewed energy. And startle your opponent at the re-invigorated demeanour!

Your opponent, life, gave you its best shot. It revelled in its own ability to put you away. But you have proven its best shot was ineffective. And if anything it has boosted your spirit!

The opponent now shrinks in confidence, is effectively beaten in 'his' own mind. You have no fear of being knocked down for you welcome this as an opportunity to jolt you out of a way of being that was flawed.

In reality, life is an endless series of opponents. If we choose to see it that way. Perhaps better to view as an opportunitiy to spar, to try out different approaches, and to welcome the knockdowns as a means to identify the flaws, but also test the resolve.

I remember an occasion where I took a heavy fall onto my left arm in one bout. There was a snapping sound. I sprang back up, adjusting my stance protecting the left and projecting the right forward in ‘unorthodox’. I had 5 further bouts in this way, holding my own with successive opponents.

Later of course I went to the hospital. And three months in plaster. So be it.

So, if an opportunity seems to materialise full of promise but then life takes a side swipe at you and pulls it away, shake it off, grin manically and say “Haha, let’s get it on. Next opponent please!!”

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