If you would have to describe a perfect friend, what would he/she be like? Do you have a concept of the different characteristics that make a perfect friend? Most people do. We usually know how a perfect, reliable friend would act.
How would you like it if you had a friend that:
- Always warn you against pain, damage, and suffering
- Is consistently there for you
- Helps you to ease existing pain
- Helps you survive
- Helps to create the best possible quality of life for you
- Works on your behalf 24/7
That’s a pretty great friend, right? Well, here is the good news: We all have a friend exactly like that!
However, this “friend” is not a person, but a mechanism we’ve all had since the day we are born. It’s a mechanism that operates automatically in our subconscious brain and controls a lot of our beliefs, decisions, actions and behavior. In Progressive Mental Alignment this friend is called your “friend mechanism.”
This unique mechanism that we are all are born with is the foundation of our survival mechanism. Its task is to protect us against unnecessary pain and damage. Your friend mechanism is a process that takes place mostly outside your will and awareness, but without it, you would die.
Away from pain
In his book “Desirable Power,” Jacob Korthuis explains exactly how this friend mechanism works and how this knowledge can improve your health and entire life.
Under normal circumstances, it is responsible for preventing you from burning yourself with a hot pan or from falling off a cliff; it helps you choose your words carefully to avoid unnecessary conflicts with others. Although your friend mechanism has several ways to push you away from pain, the most powerful one is how it controls your belief systems.
Actually, your friend mechanism is the control-center of your belief systems. Belief systems are always based on your innate drive to go away from pain (or more often the drive between pain and less pain). The power of this mechanism starts as soon as you wake up in the morning. Instantly, the belief systems kick in. In most times you are not even aware of it and you just act on your beliefs without thinking about it.
You wake up and you don’t feel very well. You’re so tired, have a cold and want to stay in bed. Then you see that it’s eight-o clock. You remember that you have an important appointment at nine with your best friend. She’s been having some relationship problems and really wants to talk about them with you. You believe that it takes you a 45-minute drive to get there. You believe that you have to get up and hurry.
Why do you believe that? Because you also believe that your friend would be extremely disappointed if you would cancel the appointment at this critical moment in her life. So you drag yourself out of bed and into your car.
You believed that it would be better for you to stay in bed, but you also believed that you had to keep your promise to talk to your friend.
In this example your friend mechanism creates all kinds of beliefs to push you away from pain. At first glance, your belief to stay in bed looks less painful than your belief that you have to keep your promise and talk to your friend. Remember, the subconscious analyzes and compares an average of a million times more data than you will ever become aware of.
A part of that subconscious comparison material is about your friendship and the trouble she is in. Another part might be data about events in your life where you experienced similar feelings of despair, in which case you experience how painful it can be when you have nobody to talk to. Your friend might even be so disappointed that you could lose her.
Your beliefs related to disappointment and losing someone is more painful than your belief that it would be better to stay in bed. Your subconscious operating friend mechanism made you get up and go because it chose the less pain over the more painful. Although both scenarios are painful, your friend mechanism pushed you away from pain by letting you act on the less painful belief.
You would have acted totally differently when you would have a day off and no appointment. Then your belief that you should stay in bed would have won because that would have pushed you away from the pain of getting up while it was not really necessary.
This is one of many everyday examples how your friend mechanism protects you. This was a scenario based on an undisturbed process of your friend mechanism.
What task or situation comes spontaneously to your mind where you felt reluctant to do something but convinced yourself with all kinds of beliefs that you had to do it anyway? What were your beliefs that you had to do it? I’m sure you will come up with more than one belief 😉
It would be great if we would have a brain that flawlessly analyzed everything and never could be disturbed in any way. This, however, is not the case. There are circumstances in all of our lives that a (kind of) short-circuiting happens in your brain.
A short-circuiting of this kind creates very powerful belief systems in all of us. These belief systems do not serve us at all and create health and relationship problems and sabotage our own success.
To understand how our sabotaging beliefs are created will open the possibility to do something about it and transform sabotaging beliefs into those that really serve us. This also results in a much more meaningful approach and higher quality of help you can offer to others.
Already excited to explore more about your amazing friend?
Stay tuned for part two of your friend mechanism.