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/ A W A R E N E S S M A G A Z I N E
M A R C H / A P R I L 2 0 1 1
34 / A W A R E N E S S M A G A Z I N E
M A R C H / A P R I L 2 0 1 1
Most of us sleepwalk through
life, and we don't even realize
it. I don't mean our daily lives
are boring or unchallenging;
I mean we're conditioned to
walk through the world in a sort
of trance state, seeing every new
circumstance through the cloudy
lens of past experience.
Our minds are hardwired to
perceive each new experience in
a way that's deeply influenced by
past outcomes, social condition-
ing and personal preferences. All
of this makes it almost impos-
sible to appreciate the new ex-
perience for what it really is: A
brand new experience, unlike
any other and filled with limit-
less possibility.
Instead, our preconceived ex-
pectations of this new moment
(and every new moment) keep
us in a sort of hypnotic trance
that's very much like sleepwalk-
ing. And it pretty much guaran-
tees our new outcomes will be
very much like our unsatisfying
old outcomes.
It's worth trying to break these
mental patterns, to start seeing
the beauty of each new moment
as it really is. Whenever a new
experience presents itself (even
if it reminds you of a familiar
old experience) the first step is
to pause and recognize: This
is brand new to me. Don't let
yourself connect it to a past ex-
perience; don't predict a future
outcome based on old stuff.
Patterns get broken when you
retrain the way your mind reacts
to an experience. If something
used to make you feel hopeless,
for example, and you feel an ex-
perience coming on that would
typically trigger that same pat-
tern of feeling hopeless... just
stop. Notice the pattern, and
lovingly refuse to fall into it.
This "short-circuiting" of that
old mental pattern of hopeless-
ness is actually a form of trance-
breaking. By doing this over and
over, every time you feel that old
familiar stuff coming on, you are
helping yourself snap out of the
powerful trance that you (and all
of humanity) have been in for
countless lifetimes. By learning
to spot this kind of pattern as it
happens, you have given your-
self the power to unplug from it.
(Your pattern may not be hope-
lessness, of course. It could be
anger or depression or a host of
other baggage you'd rather not
drag around with you anymore.)
Notice where a belief system is
plugged into your way of seeing
the world, and if it's not working
for you, just unplug it. It really
is that simple, and you yourself
have the power to do it.
Awa r e n e s s i s t h e p ow e r
source that makes this possible.
It's really not hard to unplug old
beliefs; what actually takes the
commitment and effort is the
desire to wake up and become
aware of the pattern in the first
place. We're used to sleepwalk-
ing, after all; opening our eyelids
and paying attention feels very
strange and unfamiliar at first.
OK, so we've made the com-
mitment to be more aware of old
patterns as they cloud our pres-
ent perception, and we want to
pull the plug on them. How do
we go about it? This is one tried
and true method: Once you've
noticed a familiar old pattern,
look at it closely.
See if you can track this belief
system through your previous life
experiences and observe how it
has colored your perception and
Waking Up from Old Mental Patterns
by Carrie Triffet
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behavior. Just be a witness; don't
create yet another story about
it. There's no right or wrong, no
good or bad, here. Just track the
pattern back to its source and
pull the plug on it.
Say aloud that you choose not
to remain hypnotized anymore,
because you are a powerful,
conscious being. You are not a
puppet, nor are you a slave to
your old belief systems.
Now, you're free to be con-
sciously aware of your experi-
ences as they happen. You can
decide what you choose to plug
into. How wonderful! Some-
thing entirely different is wak-
ing up within you. Run with it.
Don't argue with it, and don't
use musty old logic to talk your-
self out of it.
This is a new seed; it's up to
you to nurture it. A little water,
a little sunlight. Take care not to
squash this new awareness un-
der your boot heel! Treat it gen-
tly as it grows in strength. Let
this world of fresh possibility un-
fold as it takes you to brand new
places on your road to a newer,
more fully alive YOU.
Carrie Triffet is the author of the
award-winning book long Time no
see: diaries of an unlikely messenger.
her next book, titled The Enlighten-
ment Project, A Guide to the Everyday
Practice of Oneness will be released in
late 2011. For more information go to