Your Brain on Business Part 3: Commentary 2
Hello, and welcome back. This is part three of ‘Your Brain on Business’. We’re talking more about the commentary that your brain shares with you, as you go through and experience life. What we’re going to talk about is based on three important books that we use in our coaching practice.
And they are all by the Arbinger Institute. And they are ‘Leadership and Self Deception’, which was the first of the series, ‘The Anatomy of Peace, Resolving the Heart of Conflict’, which is the second, and then their latest book, which is ‘The Outward Mindset’. I highly recommend you get all three, and read them, if you’re only going to read one, read The Anatomy of Peace.
Your Brain’s Commentary and Conflict
Alright, what Leadership and Self Deception describe a process that happens in us where we have a sense or a feeling that we should do something for somebody. And the self-betrayal happens when we choose not to respond positively.
And the story that they use initially to describe a sense, is a story with a husband and wife lying in bed at the baby, middle of the night, and the baby starts crying, and the husband is there, and he has a sense and a feeling that he should get up and get the baby because well, his wife’s worn out.
And had he done that, had he honored the feeling of getting up to take care of the baby, he would have had a heart at peace, he would have taken care of the baby wife with a slept. And he felt good about himself, good about his wife, good about his family. Right? So that’s kind of cool. But uninteresting, right?
What happens if he does self-betrayal? What if in fact, instead of getting up, and responding positively to that sense, he denies the feeling. And eventually, the wife wakes up and mutters something, gets out of bed, and takes care of the baby. Now, that’s the act of self-betrayal.
Your Brain Wants to Reinforce Your Thinking
And they refer to this state that you’re in as being in the box or having a “heart at war”. And what happens now is your brain comes in and starts giving the commentary. Because see, just like your brain wants you to see and experience things that reinforce your thinking, for example, the two guys talking at the plant that I shared in the second blog reinforcing the manager’s position that they were goofing off. The commentary that went on, your brain wants you to be successful and be right.
And so now in the case of the husband, violating his, and denying the feeling that he should help and take care of the baby. So his wife didn’t have to. Now all of a sudden, he’s got a conundrum. And his ego is sitting there and starting to tell commentary. And it comes in two forms. One is building himself up.
Your Brain’s Narrative Is Not Always True
“Well, I’m really important that I’ve got to get up and go to work in the morning”. And all this other narrative. And then the other side and the not-so-nice part of it, which is why it’s Heart at War is the commentary about your wife, and she was just faking the sleeping and just all kinds of crap that gets generated in this narrative that your brain is telling you. Because most of the time when your brain has given you a narrative, it’s bullshit. And you need to be able to recognize when your brain is telling you a story. That’s all it is. It’s just the freakin story.
Your Brain Rationalizes Your Behavior
And what happens when your heart goes to war? It’s really your brain goes to work, rationalizing your behavior and ‘horriblizing’ the other person. Now, of course, they don’t know this narrative is going on in your brain. So the next time you interact, and you know the wife pretty pissed off at the husband. Well, he’s justified in what he does. So he comes back with some snide thing. And of course, the wife is sitting there thinking, Oh, God, I married such a jackass. What was wrong with me, right? And she starts horriblizing him and they get themselves into this interpersonal conflict, all because you violated a sense. And you start your brain started to work telling you all the reasons why it’s okay that you did something that was fundamentally not okay. And that’s what we call a heart of war.
And so that’s your ego, getting in the way and telling you stories you shouldn’t be listening to, so recognize when that’s happening, and recognize that they’re not true. And then make the effort to step out.
Be Aware of Your Brain’s Narratives
Get your heart at peace. and make peace with the person who you’ve been telling all these stories about. And that’s it for this vlog. My name is Rick Phelps. I am can be reached at Rick.Phelps@actioncoach.com and my number is 216-533-1387. If you’d like to discuss any of these things or talk about how we might help your organization adopt some of these concepts. Glad to talk to you