How to Change Your Mind

How to Change Your Mind, Break Old Habits and Develop New Useful Ones

To realize our divine potential, manifest our dreams, and achieve our worthy goals, two essential skills are required: superconscious meditation and even-mindedness. It is necessary to change our minds. Mind holds the blueprint of our life experiences; our life is an out-picturing of our states of mind and consciousness. Thus, while it is necessary to change the habitual thought patterns that have worn a groove of unconscious conditioning in the deeper layers of the mind giving rise to unwanted life conditions, it is also necessary to change the mind itself.

Both good and bad habits are the offspring of our thought process. We bring them into being and support them with attention. We can change any habit when we see how we created it.

Change Your Mind by Working with It

If we do not understand the nature of the mind and consciousness and how the brain functions as its vehicle, we won’t know how to work with the mind to change it. Trying to set and achieve goals can be difficult and frustrating when we encounter one failure after another. Why do so many of us make sincere resolutions to change our behavior at the beginning of the new year only to abandon our resolve within a short period of time? What happens? Although certain individuals may not be willing to put forth the discipline needed to make a change, most often, the failure is a result of old mental conditioning coming into play. Outwitting habits requires that we understand how they are formed and triggered so that we can make new, conscious choices.

Accomplishing our goals can also be supported by working at the deepest level of intention by bringing spiritual awareness and tools into our process.

Beginning something new requires a certain level of conscious awareness to engage in the action and see it through. Scientific studies report that when engaging in new activities, the prefrontal cortex of the brain is activated. Once we have learned the behavior and it becomes automated or habitual, the brain activity associated with it moves to the basal ganglia. This change coincides with a shift from activity requiring attention—which stimulates the executive center of the brain (the prefrontal cortex)—to an automated activity that does not require the same level of attention now taking place in what is called the reptilian or instinctual area of the brain. Once awareness of activity is centered in and then directed by this automated functionality, its principal trigger is environment, not intention.

Understanding why environment is such a strong factor is useful. Paramahansa Yogananda observed, “Environment is stronger than willpower.” He was exactly on point about those actions that have become habitual—remember: they are triggered by environment. And, if we are tired or otherwise off-balance, we are likely to respond to the environmental trigger, even if we had previously intended to behave differently. What is needed?

Do THIS to Change Your Mind

  1. Understand how habits are formed and how to outwit them.
  2. Practice healthy self-care to maintain balance and the ability to respond with your intention rather than react to environmental factors.
  3. Draw upon spiritual resources beyond self-discipline and will when setting intentions. Introducing spiritual awareness allows us to connect with our “wisdom-guided will,” which is consistent with the highest good and opens our awareness to divine grace. Regularly practice superconscious meditation to open your heart and mind to the Infinite. Cultivate faith in God, the Gurus, and your divine Self.

We change our thoughts by replacing those that are not useful with those that are. We change our minds by purifying the mental field through superconscious meditation, devotion to God, and even-mindedness in the face of challenging circumstances. With a purified mind and heart, one can cultivate the use of divine, wisdom-guided will. Will is the soul power we use to make choices; it empowers thought with intention. The direction of our life rests upon will, our power to choose.


I shall remold my consciousness. In this new year I am a new person.
And I shall change my consciousness again and again until I have manifested
the shining light of Spirit in whose image I am made.

—Paramahansa Yogananda




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