An Old Paradigm
Once upon a time when I thought of brain fog I would think of external stimuli clogging up the brain. Stimuli such as drink or any other drug. However, as I have been self learning I have begun to realise just how much brain fog I have been dealing with on a daily basis. Brain fog that is being generated internally. This brain fog is sneaky because it has become so normalised for me that it often appears to me to be a part of the outside world and nothing at all to do with me. In other words, I don’t see any alternative to how I could experience life when I am not consciously making changes that will bring me different results.
The Invisible Brain Fog
As always, lets start with a simple question. What exactly is the invisible brain fog? This question is like asking how long is a length of string? The only complete answer I can give you at this moment is, well it’s pretty damn long. However, what I can explain is what I have seen of this string so far.
The invisible brain fog, as I currently know it, are the things I am and have been focusing on for no apparent logical reason. My attachment is at an emotional level rather than at a rational level. I find it helps to consult stoic philosophy to clarify what I mean by what is logical to focus on. According to the stoics we should clarify whether we are focusing on something that is within our control or outside of it. A simple question to then ask myself would be
will any amount of worrying change this situation for me?
If the answer is no then it isn’t something I should emotionally be attached too. The only reason I am still going through the emotions and experiencing this focus in my reality is because I have fallen into a conditioned thinking pattern. Conditioned ways of thinking can be hard to break out of until I am at a place where I can see the illogic behind them. Until then here are a few things I have found useful.
How to see the Invisible
I have found that when I set myself goals to strive for then I inevitably will start to see the obstacles that get in the way of these goals. These are the very same obstacles that are cluttering up my experience of life, generally in a negative sense. Setting goals for myself is the best way I have found to see these distractions. Setting goals allows me to prioritise my days. Setting goals allows me to see that ultimately my life is the result of the decisions that I make. I have found so far that it is a process. It isn’t an easy process but boy is it fulfilling. I have begun to see that the quality of my life is in direct correlation to the quality of the questions that I ask myself.
Nowadays I start my day with a to do list. On this to do list there are generally 3 items. The first item is ‘refresh’. This reminds me that I can start each day anew. This allows me to see that I don’t need to carry my thoughts and experiences of yesterday over into today. It means that the power to start afresh each day is a choice available to me from within. At the moment item two is the one thing I need to do with Python programming and the third item is to do with writing.
What I have begun to see is that in order to focus my energy and attention on solving real world problems, then my attention needs to be on these problems. If I want to progress in my Python programming problem solving skills then I my focus and attention need to be harnessed in that direction. In order to become a better writer and articulate my ideas in a more concise manner then I need to practice and hone this skill. When I can see the illogic behind focusing on the minutia and things outside of my locus of control then I open the space from within for real progress and growth.
Originally published at medium.com