Identity & Influence Insight
EXERCISE: Working with Influences
Stimulants as Influences
Imagine everything and everybody in your external world exists as a stimulant to make you feel a certain way. Think straight through the physicality of people, places and things, and instead see them as (blobs) of energy that hold a certain appeal or influence. What do they represent to you? What do they trigger or inspire? Can you see how the external influences are a reflection of what might be going on inside your mind or your conditioned patterns? Try to open to see as you can here. Make notes. Put together patterns and see.
The Messages of Influence
For even just one day, pretend that everything external exists to guide you. Every person or situation that seemingly crosses you path – every sign you see, every song you hear, every circumstance that develops – ask what does it have to tell you? What is the lesson, what is it sharing with you? What guidance is it giving you?
Your Greatest Influences
Growing up, what people or situations have had the most impact on you? Who or what continues to have the most influence on you? Take a few minutes to reflect on all of the influences in your life – past, present, future. Jot down any names, situations or thoughts that come to mind. These will be helpful references along this journey. Go back to your Personal Story and Examine Your Agreements exercises and reread these to discover some of your earliest, most deeply rooted influences. Pay attention to your own patterns. Is there anyone that you consciously take parts of your identity from? For instance, the way you talk, style yourself, act, react, etc. When you catch yourself habitually reacting a certain way, getting defensive or saying things that aren’t really “you”, ask yourself “whose words are these?” Are they the words of a parent, sibling, friend, superior, celebrity or childhood bully?
Who are YOU? What are your core ideals and values? What is your ethos, your integrity? Ask yourself who are you? How do you treat people? What do you believe in? In what moments do you feel like you are not you? Why might this be?
Your ego is the relationship you have with your awareness of self. We can suffer with ego issues when we are feeling low self-esteem, insecure, confused, defensive or disconnected from our authentic selves. Ego can often be the root of all fear, so affirming a healthy bond with your perception of you is one of the greatest freedoms you can give yourself. As usual, awareness is your catalyst for this journey. You can start to become an observer of your ego relations. How do you speak to yourself and of yourself? Where do you find yourself holding back from the world? Where do you find yourself exaggerating or overcompensating? When does your ego become reactive? Where do you get sensitive about taking things personally? What are the roots here? When you can face the things that trigger you, you can start to manage your reactions better, making you a stronger, more sound person.
Sustaining the Practice
With so many years of conditioning, plus constant daily influences, we can exercise the exercises above to maintain awareness towards our authentic selves. Every day, make a conscious commitment to unplug from the influence of those you admire, and those who distract you. Tune out of the ads, the social shoulds, and “ideal image” centric feeds. Avoid anything telling you that you have or are less than everything you need. Avoid anything that makes you dream for something specifically – even if it is positive. Get out of the rhythms of the confines of your daily routine or comfort zones, and connect with the things that make you feel warm and fuzzy inside. Get in touch with yourself. Take yourself out or on adventures. Be alone. Grow, strive, seek. Give makeovers to whatever aspects of life need it. Go back through this course to remind yourself of these feelings, and support yourself with the books and resources provided on CoCre.co.
Celebrate Your Shine
As you clear through, start taking into account all the things in you that make you extraordinary and shine brightly. What makes you unique? How are you radiant? How are you kind? What offerings do you hold to share with the world?