Why Your Story Matters
Your internal world creates your external world--that’s why the story you tell yourself is so important.
In this episode you’ll learn how your identity affects and structures your entire life, including your thoughts, emotions, and actions. The bad habits and negative influences affecting your life are actually learned habits that you’ve picked up along the way. This seems like a bad thing, but what it really means is that these are all under your control.
Those negative influences in your life are related to your identity. By controlling your own story, you take control over your identity and your life. In this episode you’ll learn how to do that, including something practical that you can start doing today.
What you’ll learn in this episode:
How your identity creates your habits
How anxiety is a learned response at the level of the subconscious
What role the brain plays in forming a person’s identity
The importance of childhood and the past on one’s present identity and circumstances
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You’re listening to episode number 2 of The Identity Factor podcast. This episode is all about how your identity was formed and how your identity affects your thoughts, habits, and behavior… really the entire world around you. Essentially, you learned to be who you are today and your brain has created a specific narrative for your life. In fact, you’ve probably been following the same script for years and telling yourself the same story. So be sure to listen to this one all the way through, because I know it’s going to resonate with you.
Hi there, I’m Anthony Serino and by joining this podcast, you’ve started a life-changing journey with me as your tour guide. You’re now also part of a community of like-minded individuals who light this world with passion. As a high performance coach and expert in habit modification I’ve worked with amazing individuals from all over the world who have transformed their lives from within . As you listen to this podcast, you’re going to get an inside look at my science-based approach to transformation.
Let me start off by asking… what is your story?
Who are you?
The best thing you can do for yourself right now, is define who you are. Because once you define who you are… and what I mean by that is.. how you identify yourself as a person… and figure out what story you’ve been telling yourself - Then you can determine whether or not that identity and that story is congruent with the life you actually want.
Because if WHO YOU ARE is not the type of person who would normally have that type of life, or that type of success, or that type of wealth or that type of relationship… then you’re going to keep coming up short and not getting the outcomes you want.
And you may be wondering… well how do I figure out who I am?
It’s easy really… for example, if you want to know who you are when it comes to money… look at your bank account.. Look at your job or the state of your business. If you want to know who you are health wise… look in the mirror. If you want to know who you are as a parent, or a spouse, or a partner… look at your relationship.
Because everything you have in this life is a result of who and how you are being.
And here’s an important thing to understand… in this life you DO NOT get what you want… you get who you are.
Who you are … your identity… dictates what habits you have…. How you think… and how you respond to the world around you.
Therefore your outcomes in life and your current circumstance, are a result of your identity.
Basically… if you don’t have what you want in life… it’s because you’re not that type of person.
And the type of person you are… your identity… is a result of your past experiences … your life story if you will.
Now your story, in part, has been written for you by your brain at a neurological and unconscious level. Everything you’ve been told, everything you’ve told yourself, every event, every emotional experience… your brain has taken the information from ALL of it to form your identity.. Your beliefs, perceptions, expectations, etc...
Meaning… below the threshold of conscious awareness… you LEARNED to be who you are today. Much in the same way you learned to ride a bike, or maybe learned a new language or some skill.
Whether or not you realize it, you learned to respond to your external world, your experiences, in very specific, habituated ways. You learned what makes you feel good and your brain now produces an emotional response (which we normally label as “positive”) to those things it has determined will make you feel good.
On the other hand… you’ve also learned what makes you feel bad… and now you respond to those sort of things with a quote unquote negative emotional response like anxiety or stress…
So Anthony… you’re saying I LEARNED to be anxious and stressed?!
But let’s not get ahead of ourselves because we’ll talk about habits, feelings, and emotions more in depth in the next episode.
Okay, so there’s this ever evolving script …that your brain writes based on the information it obtains from your external world and then it follows that script to make your life easier. Your brain is the writer AND the actor.
And it’s so important you understand that your unconscious (or subconscious).. And I use those two terms interchangeably… is following this script automatically every single day. BUT when you realize there’s this part of you doing that, you can step in consciously, as the director if you will, and start rewriting the script.
You do this by reprogramming your subconscious which is that part of your brain responsible for holding and responding to all the data it’s received from the moment you were born. And one of my top priorities with this podcast and my online community is to teach you effective, science-based techniques you can use to reprogram your brain to produce the outcomes you want in life.
Okay, so we are still at about 30,000 feet, but I know this is all beginning to resonate with a lot of you.
Because we HAVE ALL tried to change something in our life and failed to produce any meaningful result. We have all tried to break bad habits and create new ones.
But you’ve been doing it backwards thinking it was the right way to get what you want in life.
If you’re anything like me you’ve probably said things like… if I had more money… if I had more time.. If I had more energy… if I had this... if I had that..
If I had this thing… then I could do that thing… THEN I’’d be successful. THEN I’d be happy.. Then I’d be healthy
But I’m here to tell you that is THE WRONG way to do it.
Because if you’re not already being the type of person who would have those things, you’ll never have those things.
So, you must first determine who and how you HAVE TO BE in order TO DO the things you have to DO to get the things you want TO HAVE.
And that… that is the throughline for this podcast.. For my work with clients… and for MY life in general.
I’ll be repeating it in different ways during our time together because repetition is one of the best ways to learn something and if there’s only ONE thing you take away from all of is… it’s that modifying your identity is the key to creating the life you want and experience real transformation.
Your internal world creates your external world.
For example, you can’t become wealthy if you’re not already wealthy in your mind.
And that may sound a little odd when you first hear it.
But here’s something for you to write down and internalize… wealth is not a CONDITION… it’s a perception.
Let me repeat that… wealth is not a condition.. It’s a perception.
And your perceptions, beliefs, etcetera … are byproducts of your identity.
The same thing could be said about happiness… or success…
But let’s stick with the idea of wealth for a moment.
Some people feel wealthy with $1,000 in the bank… where others may feel poor or broke with $1,000 in the bank.
It’ll all comes down to your perception and beliefs about money, which like I said, goes back to your identity.
Your identity specifically around money was influenced primarily by your parents or guardians as you were growing up.
If both your parents worked 9-5 jobs, made $65,000, you all went on 1 nice vacation a year and they were generally considered happy…
Then, chances are, your beliefs and perceptions about money and wealth will parallel their financial paths.
And if your unconscious belief or perception is that $65,000 per year equals comfort and happiness, then I can guarantee your brain has formed habits and will activate thoughts, feelings, and emotions congruent with that belief or perception.
So even if you’re consciously saying to yourself “I want to make $500,000 per year”... your brain has already written a script or a program that is most likely to result in you making $65,000 a year.
Another belief many people have, and I certainly had was that in order to make more money you need to work hard.
And many of us develop, or at least try to develop an identity of being a “hard worker”.
Let me give you a personal example of how this played out in my own life.
So when I was a kid... my mom was a single mom who worked THREE jobs to make ends meet. And she worked really hard and worked long hours to make just enough money to pay the bills and put food on the table.
But hard work equals more money, right?!
Clearly not. My mom was, and still is, one of the hardest workers I know, but at the time… could only afford boxed mac and cheese and frozen hotdogs.
Fast forward to my early 20s… and what was I doing?
I was fresh out of college… working at a restaurant… also selling real estate… AND, at the same time, putting together a business plan for a third source of income.
I’ve since modified these, but my unconscious beliefs were that I had to have multiple jobs AND I had to always be “working” to make money.
And did I have any extra money from working so much? Nope. Just enough to pay my bills and eat decent food.
So let’s take a step back for a moment and talk about identity in general, not just around money.
By now, As your listening to this, you should be asking yourself some questions.
Like: How did my parents raise me, what were their beliefs, and how has my life been affected as a result?
From a neurological standpoint, the overwhelming majority of our identity (which, once again, includes our beliefs, perceptions, expectations, etc…) was formed before the age of 10 when the prefrontal cortex has not yet fully developed.. Give or take a year or two.
And I’m not going to get into the scientific nuances of all this just yet… but before the age of 10 or so… we have not yet developed that critical, analytical part of our mind that filters information from our external world.
There’s a reason they say children’s brains are like sponges and call it our “formative years”.
Our brains, as children take in information very literally and our brain is learning how to make us respond to the world around us.
This is why, if you look at a 6 year old and call him ugly… she’s going to instantly cry and feel bad. Her brain took that in as fact and responded accordingly.
On the other hand, if you call a 13 year old ugly… he may laugh and shrug it off because he has developed that critical element of her mind where she can analyze and determine whether or not the information she is taking in is factual.
Okay, so I have no intentions of having the nature vs nurture debate… because I’m clearly in the camp that supports the latter.
And I know, based on how I changed my own life, and how I’ve helped facilitate massive transformation with clients from all over the world… that the KEY to transformation is modifying the beliefs and perceptions we LEARNED from our past.
I mean think about it… the story of your life would be COMPLETELY different if you grew up in a different country or with different parents or whatever.
Which means you’d have a different identity and then your beliefs would be different… which means your habits would be different… which of course means your outcomes would be different.
But your story couldn’t have been any different… because it’s not. Things had to happen exactly as they did. Because they already happened.
Let that marinate for a moment.
Everything up until this exact moment ALREADY happened… which means it had to happen exactly as it did. There’s literally no other way.
That right there should give you a bit of freedom from anything in your past you’ve been holding onto.
But let me ask you this… how long have you been telling yourself the same story?
“My parents got divorced… so I’m like this.”
“ I was the youngest child… so I’m like this”
“I had this traumatic experience happen to me… so I’m like this”
Your story has become who you are… and in turn… who you are… your identity… perpetuates that story.
And your beliefs, perceptions, habits, and behaviors will always be congruent with your story if you keep telling yourself the same story.
What does this ALL mean?!
Well… for one.. It’s imperative you create a new narrative for yourself. As I said moment’s ago. You’re story up until now, couldn’t have been any different.
BUT your story from this day forward can be. And it MUST be different if you want to transform your life.
Because if you keep telling yourself the same story… your STORY WILL NEVER change.
Who do you have TO BE to get the things you want. Whether it’s wealth, health, love, or whatever.
And what would the story of that type of person look like?
Imagine it’s a year from now. And the difference is you are now living, thinking, acting, and experiencing life exactly the way you want to.
There you are with everything you’ve ever wanted. Peace, love, money… everything. And now notice how all of that makes you feel.
Perhaps happy… joyful… confident… accomplished… whatever it may be
Now look back on that year… what type of person were you being? What sort of things did you have to do get those things you wanted?
THIS is your new story.
Own it… refine it… make it even MORE detailed.
The next thing for you to do… if you’re serious about making real, dramatic changes in your life… write your new story down with pen and paper.
Just a page or so. But write it down so you can see it in black and white. Once you’ve done that… read it daily until you can visualize it effortlessly.
Then, every night before you fall asleep, run that new story in your mind like a movie.
Suspend all judgment and disbelief for a week or so and just do it. I promise you, you’ll begin to notice interesting things start to happen… you’ll find yourself feeling different in the best way possible.
But don’t take my word for it. Give it shot.
Now before we land this plane… as always, my intention with each episode is to leave you with an AHA moment. I’m calling it the “aha factor” from now on.. Because well… it just sounds cool.
But what resonated with you… what was the aha factor in this episode?
For you… it may be the moment when you came to the realization that everything in your life had to happen exactly the way it did because it already happened. Or maybe it’s now finally clicked with you … that you… can change… your story...
Well that’s all for this episode of the Identity Factor. You’ll definitely want to listen to the next one because we’re taking an in depth look at habits… how they develop at a neurological level and how they affect everything you have AND don’t have in this life. If you have habits you’ve been trying to break or create, this is where the rubber meets the road and the real transformation begins.
For show notes and more details on this episode head over to theanthonyserino.com and click on the podcast page.
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