“Emancipate yourselves from mental slavery, none but ourselves can free our minds…”
– Bob Marley
In last week’s article, we explored the 3 ‘persuasion paradoxes that often stand in the way of authentic influence. In this article, we’re going to have another look at the source of your greatest ‘persuasion power’, as well as how to break through the simple misunderstanding that gets in the way.
A UK motel chain recently revealed that 30% of their adult customers bring a teddy bear or security blanket with them, and it raises a fascinating point. Here’s a paragraph from my book CLARITY: Clear Mind, Better Performance, Bigger Results (© 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd):
Many toddlers have a security blanket or teddy bear. This is what psychologists refer to as a “transitional object”; something that “gives” the child a sense of comfort and security in times of change or uncertainty (e.g. bedtime). Of course, we know that the blanket or teddy bear can’t actually “give” the child a feeling of security or comfort; that can only come from within the child themselves. It just seems to the child as though the feelings come from the transitional object. But it doesn’t work that way. It only works one way; inside-out.
While only 30% of the people reading this article still take a teddy-bear or security blanket to bed with them, I can guarantee that we all have times when that “security blanket logic” is at play in our lives. Think about it…
– “I’ve got a lot of job-security.”
– “My relationship makes me feel secure.”
– “My security comes from money in the bank.”
– “Closing this deal will give me a lot of security.”
You may have said or felt something like this recently. It may even look to you as though it’s a statement of fact. But the reality is that feelings of peace and security only ever come from within you, even when it seems as though they’re coming from somewhere else (Eg. Money, relationship, job, client, blanket, teddy bear etc).
And while it can be tempting to dive into the practicalities of money, jobs, relationships, clients etc, I encourage you to take a step back and look at the logic of it. Just as the child’s security blanket only appears to be the source of their comfort and wellbeing, your job / relationship / money / client etc only appears to be the source of yours (when it looks that way).
Feelings of security come from secure thinking
The fact of the matter is that you’re always living in the feeling of your thinking. And you’re connected up to an innate source of fresh, new secure and peaceful thinking. You don’t need to do anything to “fix” your insecure thinking – just understanding how the system works is enough. Just as you understand that the teddy bear never gives a child that sense of security, you can start to see through the ‘optical illusion’ of the mind and recognise the true source of your peace and security. The more deeply you understand this, the more unconditional security you’ll experience, and the more freedom you’ll have to influence from the heart, free from neediness and insecurity.
Security blanket babylon
And why is this article called “Security Blanket Babylon”? Rastafarian’s use the word “babylon” to refer to oppressive political power structures. But all oppression is the inevitable result of a fundamental misunderstanding of where security, happiness and wellbeing come from. The outside-in misunderstanding (the mistaken belief that our feelings come from outside us in space or time) is widespread in modern society, and being reinforced from all sides. Our best bet for eliminating all forms of struggle, suffering and oppression is to eliminate this misunderstanding and wake up to a more logical, principled basis for life.
You can get a deeper understanding of the inside-out nature of life, and increase your inner security by exploring the audios, articles and videos here at www.JamieSmart.com and staying in the conversation.
To your increasing clarity
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My mother wanted to throw away my soft toy rabbit, that over the years had become no more than a small piece of cloth. One night I ate it and proudly said, it will always be with me now. They didn’t believe me, but nevrr found it; because I really did eat it.
I love that, John – thanks for sharing 🙂
BTW, have you ever read the book "The Velveteen Rabbit"? It's very beautiful and may have some resonances for you.
Yes Jamie, great book. I am busy writung my own short stories at the moment. The creative side of me was set free during Master prac course. I work a lot with young people an find stories very useful.
Keep up the good work my friend.
Inner Shell Therapy
Quoting a Russian reggae artist from 80s (I don't know their name), "Babylon is a state of mind, do you understand or not?". Let me tell you, how it works in my case, taking for instance one of my moments which MIGHT be a moments of clarity (though not necessarilly were).
For example it's morning, before goin' to work, not more than 2 weeks ago. I have about 20 minutes, so I sit at my computer and write a paragraph or two for my new story. I write, and it feels so good to have something on my mind and write it down. And I feel like "Oh, in fact I don't need to go to work; I could just sit and write, and feel alright. I feel secure with it". Then so called common sense steps in and it says: "OK, I understand you feel secure, but if you don't go to work, you won't have enough money to pay your rent, eleltricity to make your computer work and so on, and you'll get into trouble. Well, I know that getting into trouble can't damage your inner security. But, on the other hand, I can't see or imagine, how your security feeling can keep you from getting into trouble, or get you out of trouble. So your inner security seems to be another teddy bear." So much for my moment of clarity (if it's a moment of clarity, rather than, for example, a moment of wishful thinking).
PS. Next month I hope to purchase your book. I'm very curious about it.