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Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Mental Models on the Catwalk of Reality

I think that this post falls under the category “Science of the Mind”.

How many of you have ever moved into an apartment and hear a cacophony next door? It’s past 11:00 pm and you have an important exam tomorrow or an important meeting at work. What miscreants live next door? How can they be so inconsiderate? Your blood starts to boil at the thought of your ignorant, 24-hour party people, drinking, drugging neighbors. You decide to give it another hour or so to die down. An hour later the music is still pumping. You decide to go next door and give them a piece of your mind and let them know you are minutes from calling the cops.

Your heart rate increases as you knock on the door. In your mind you are rehearsing exactly how you are going to tell these people off. As you firmly knock on the door, it swings open. You hear the music, the lights are on, but there are no people in sight. You walk into the next room and see a boom box, a ladder, and some painting supplies. In reality, there is no party or evil low-brow neighbors it was just a forgetful painter that left his boom box playing. You shut the boom box off. You return to your apartment.

Oddly enough, your heart rate is still higher than normal and you still feel a twinge of anger at your non-existent neighbor. This situation illustrates the power of Mental Modeling. Your Mental Model was a construct of what you expected to find upon going over to your next door neighbors apartment. As your mind fleshed out the details, it basically became your reality. Mental Models are so strong that they can change your physiology.

This shows the power of Mental Modeling. What we see in our minds becomes our reality. By changing our Mental Models we can remove limits in our lives and create new opportunities.


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