Our 3 pound mass of gushy grey matter of billions of neurons, (otherwise known as our brain) has thousands of thoughts a day. While the exact number is controversial and claimed to be anywhere between 6,500 and 50,000 – it is unquestionable that we have thousands of opportunities to make real change.
And since it’s fun to consider, on the higher end of things, The National Science Foundation’s higher-end estimation of 50,000 equates to one thought every two seconds! (And for you men out there, at least half of those are probably about sex, right?)
Whatever you spend your days contemplating, you engage in an average of 35,000 activations (i.e., choices) every day. That really means that you are offered so many possibilities to make change in your life each and every day. But the question is, how many of those 35,000 activations are intentional and centric to your purpose? And how do you use them to unleash your superpower?
If, as you think about it, the answer scares you a little bit. Well, you’re not alone — but don’t get too worried yet.
What ARE Activations?
But before we go any further, let’s get on the same page. What exactly are activations?
Those activations, our “A” in MAPS, are each and every choice, action, or thought that we invest in — emotionally or otherwise. When we’re activating mindfully and intentionally, those actions catalyze our purpose. We’ll dig more into that in a moment.
But whether or not those activations are mindful and purposeful, every choice, action, or even invested-upon thought is an activation nonetheless. This is where things can get complicated.
Each one of these activations, from the most minuscule to the most substantial, add to the vibrant tapestry of our lives — and ultimately define what its final kaleidoscope looks like. They define what our purpose and life looks like.
Design Your Tapestry To Support Your Superpower
If you are activating one given thing consistently, not only will you strengthen neuropathways that affirm and solidify that as reality, that activation will also have a larger presence in your tapestry, coloring it accordingly.
Likewise, sticking with the metaphor, if you are designing a tapestry, you are likely to be incredibly intentional about what hues you place where and what you want the final result to look like.
If you absentmindedly use a particular color because it’s convenient, or you are doing something else at the same time – maybe watching your favorite rom-com — it will shape your tapestry accordingly. Your absentminded or convenient choices, over time, will shift the aesthetic of your tapestry, perhaps resulting in a tapestry that looks nothing like what you had imagined.
But if you plan for it, those same activations can also transform your tapestry into something beautiful. In this case, you will be aware of the choices you are making and make them intentionally.
And let me tell you, with 35,000 opportunities, you have ample opportunities to design a life and version of yourself in any way you’d like.
And while any one activation may be unnoticeable in the grand scheme of our tapestry aesthetic, over time, if you continually repeat activations, they can transform the tapestry of your life! In other words, meditating or not meditating one day a week is not a big deal and won’t be a huge influence on your tapestry – but doing it or not doing it every day may very well transform your life.
So mindful activation matters a lot. And that ties into our purpose.
It’s In YOUR Hands, Baby
What, then, is purpose?
It’s one of those amorphous things that wellness gurus talk about incessantly — but what about the real deal tangible thing? Our purpose is really our superpower. It’s our WHY. It’s the brightly colored, finished tapestry.
And the first question you must ask yourself is, what kind of tapestry do you want to create?
Sure, you might have a beautiful array of colors and threads, and you might have a few ideas of how you’d like to design your tapestry, but there are two things to consider:
1. The colors, or resources, you have available
2. The point of arrival, or what you desire to create
True. You can combine all sorts of beautiful threads, but if you don’t have a roadmap as to what, how, or when you’d like to create this masterpiece, it could turn out to be a blur of green and one hue of brown – which unless that’s your thing – is probably not the outcome you’d want.
Within the constraints of your talents and resources, you have the power to construct the tapestry — and life — you desire. So those activations make a difference.
But what happens when you act upon feelings, sensations, or choices that do NOT align with your purpose?
When it doesn’t turn out the way you hoped, you might get angry, frustrated, and even throw away the whole tapestry.
OR, you can practice surrender (the “S” of MAPS), and gracefully recognize that maybe you failed to plan properly, which resulted in an alternate ending to your tapestry.
The important point here is to have a vivid understanding of your superpower and the tapestry you want to create. And then on every step of your journey, mindfully ask yourself, “am I adding to my tapestry in a way that is getting me closer or further away from my vision?”
Try to recognize the abundance of opportunities you have to shape and reshape your life’s tapestry and your superpower. While there’s no need to micromanage – and if you have curated serving habituations through a well-designed Routine, you won’t need to – try and be cognizant of your own patterns.
Every day you have these 35,000 GOLDEN chances to make changes. Go forth and conquer.