By Redefining The Boundaries of Unlimited Possibilities.

Fact is everybody’s truth — A rational mind loves it. 

Fiction is nobody’s truth — An idle mind grabs it. 

A myth is somebody’s truth — A mind looking for assurance snatch it.

Usually, it’s a mix of facts, fiction, and myth that binds a community together by giving them a common worldview to function within.

Science can tell you how the world functions, but only myth tells you why it functions the way it does. Usually, myths are so immutable that they remain unchallenged despite strings of contrary pieces of evidence.

Well mythology is not the only source that gives birth to commonly accepted myths. There are a whole bunch of myths that has managed to grow itself into a gospel truth outside the ambit of mythology. Since Myths — irrespective of its origin — serve to encourage and influence worldview, it becomes much more important to revisit and scrutinize them with a certain degree of objectivity. I have attempted to demystify a few of them.

The Myth Of Accumulation & Ownership:

This Myth has gained widespread acceptance and has successfully acquired the status of gospel truth.

It makes you believe that you need to accumulate a lot of knowledge, socially accepted titles, and worldly possessions before embarking on your most cherished life-altering journey.

If not, then Why do you think there is so much consumption of self-help articles?

It makes you feel more and more inadequate. Almost all of them play tricks with your evolutionary psychology of fear, failure, and inadequacy.

As a result, you become pretty convinced that as soon as you succeed in getting rid of all your inadequacies, nobody can stop you from becoming the next Elon Musk.

The Myth Of Control:

Our minds are evolutionary conditioned to appreciate the certainty. We love stability in our life; so much so that we become stressed at the very thought of uncertainty in any form.

The moment we foresee any loss in our control, we become way too apprehensive about the outcome.

We often try our level best to cope up with this uncertainty by making an endless to-do list, finding that perfect productivity app, or mindless consumption of television and smartphone.

You need to understand that most of the time you don’t control what happens to you in life, your only control is how you choose to respond.

The Myth Of Happiness:

It is one of my favorite Myth because it makes you sincerely believe — If only you could earn more money, be in better physical shape, or have a more understanding partner, you would have made your unique mark on the world map.

And there is a reason behind this — the image of the world that you carry in your head, is just a representative model for your convenience.

At best, you are only aware of a few selected concepts and relationships between them. And ironically you are using them to represent the real system.

Being happy can never be the direct purpose of your life. However, it can be the byproduct. As rightly said by Ralph Waldo Emerson — 

“The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.”

The Myth Of Work Life Balance:

This Myth is sold primarily by stoking the fear of insecurity in you. All kinds of sufferings — physical, emotional, psychological, social, and financial are targeted.

As long as we are struggling with the constant fear of suffering, security will always remain our first and the foremost concern.

And this constant fear of suffering is not the best place to explore all your unlimited possibilities of life.

Once you are willing to venture outside the shadow of insecurities, there will be an instant realization on your part that it’s only “work” if you don’t like it.

If you love doing what you do, it doesn’t feel like work.

The Myth Of Perfection:

Perfectionism, in short, is the belief that, if we live, look and act perfect, then we’ll be able to shield ourselves from criticism, judgment or blame.

However, life as a perfectionist is emotionally unhealthy, because it makes your self-worth dependent on approval or acceptance from others.

Whenever perfectionists fail to achieve perfection, they blame themselves for their inability and tell themselves to “do better,” regardless of whether that’s possible.

Perfectionism can also lead to life paralysis, i.e., the inability to put oneself out into the world, due to fear of rejection.

Life does not become beautiful because you are perfect, life becomes beautiful because you put your heart into everything that you do.

Life is never going to be perfect because whichever way you may be functioning right now, you could always bring in a little more of improvement.

The Myth Of Scarcity:

Scarcity is the impending fear of uncertainty where you start doubting whether what you need will be available or not.

And this impending fear generated through scarcity mindset in turns activates the most primitive part of the brain that deals with the urgency of survival and competition.

But, how this mindset of scarcity gets manifested in your life?

By being more insecure, you tend to cling on to all forms of socially accepted yardsticks of securities.

As a consequence, you end up coloring all those choices that you make daily.

The Myth Of Experience:

We have been fed this Myth for generations. We are religiously told to have some patience to gain sufficient experience because skill is never accepted as a substitute for invaluable experience.

However, extensive research has consistently shown that many people don’t improve at their work even after many years of experience; in fact, some get worse as they gain experience.

If you ever wish to become a truly world-class performer, it’s how — not just how much — you practice that makes the difference: it takes deep and deliberate practice to improve performance.

Deep and Deliberate practice means identifying the specific elements of performance that require improvement and then sharply focusing your efforts on those areas, practicing those activities and getting continuous feedback on them to get better.

The Myth Of Multitasking:

Most of us subscribe and succumb to this myth almost without any resistance. Our attention is always being pulled in millions of directions daily.

We are surviving the days of information overload. With more ways than ever to be connected and communicate with one another, it can feel like there’s an endless supply of tasks that demand to be juggled all at once.

Smartphone usage is a case in point. On average we end up checking our phone more than 100 times a day — that means we are spending more than 20 days every year glued to our smartphone!

It’s habits like these which encourages us to multitask which eventually makes us mentally exhausted, spiritually disheartened, and cognitively unproductive.

Multitasking also results in the release of stress hormones, like adrenaline, which has adverse effects on our health in the long-term and also leads to short-term memory loss.

That means the little information we do take in when we’re multitasking is more difficult to remember at a later stage. So even though we might enjoy the thrill of multitasking and think it’s useful, it’s time to think again.

The Myth Of Motivation:

Motivation at best can give you the much-needed kick start on your journey towards your goal. However, its role in your long-term success is debatable.

Motivation needs fuel, and that fuel is your habit of discipline — a habit that is built merely by your continuous and relentless efforts.

Discipline is action-oriented, where the emphasis is on doing things.

Whereas motivation makes you feel good. Motivation is just an emotional state of mind where you feel good about yourself.

Discipline is a skill that keeps you ticking each day of your life. It’s a habit which you cannot break if you ever wish to succeed.

After some time you no longer care if you’re motivated or not. As long as you are disciplined in your endeavor, your faith in your own ability gets strengthened with each passing day.

Parting Thoughts

Slight but consistent change in your overall perspective changes how you end up seeing your world, which in turn changes how you see yourself. Not an easy task, but if you start by unsubscribing, the listed myths you can have a head start. 

Once you understand the inherent power of your narrative to redefine yourself, you are better placed to re-imagine the boundaries of unlimited possibilities.

By getting rid of your limiting narratives, you are more than likely to stumble upon all the dormant energy lying within you that could be channelized to take massive but consistent action.

“We are what we repeatedly do. So don’t shy away from making a conscious habit of continuous and incremental improvement and see the magical transformation within you.”

I am a full time bureaucrat who loves to play at the intersection of Neuroscience, Cognitive Psychology, and philosophy.
I am a full time bureaucrat who loves to play at the intersection of Neuroscience, Cognitive Psychology, and philosophy.

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