Today we are influenced by a sea of information, world views and social networks that play an important role in shaping our attitudes, preferences, and behaviors. From an INNERTAINMENT perspective, we call this our OUTER THEATER. We belong to various “systems”, along with their inherent “stories”, that influence and mold us along our life journey. For example, we’re partof the family, educational, medical, religious, mental health, political, and financial systems, including their specific set of accompanying rules, promoting their particular values, agendas and stories. “Systems” are designed to work by organizing efficiency to meet their objectives. Many of us get lost in systems that don’t really “see us”, that instead promote efficiency over individual differences and place profit and expediency ahead of people. If we accept the idea that we eventually become what we pay attention to, then the systems we’re immersed in and the images, actions, information, and world views they impose on us, have a cumulative effect. Underneath these systems are the messages that we “file” in memory to construct our belief systems. These are powerful, but often “silent” influences, especially for defenseless children who have not yet developed the skills needed to think critically and to discriminate between positive and negative messages.
Recently, neuroscience research has uncovered the role of mirror neurons in the human brain. A mirror neuron is a brain cell that fires in our brain when we observe the action performed by another person. This neuron in our head “mirrors” the brain activity of the other person that we are observing, and can act as if we were “actually” performing or participating in the same action instead of merely observing it. From a physical perspective, when we are watching another person move or exercise, we are also using our mirror neurons to move and exercise the same way in our own head. The positive side of this brain research is the potential to learn from coaches, mentors, and positive models. The negative impact takes place when we are surrounded and immersed in toxic images and messages without the awareness or “tools” to understand or change how our brain is responding.
Both adults and children are surrounded by these OUTER THEATER influences that play a important role in shaping our brain and behavior, most of the time without any real understanding of how it is actually happening to us. As these Circles of Influence take on more authority and leverage in our lives, we truly need to understand how to create a counterbalance within us and expand our degrees of personal power and self-control.
OUR CIRCLES OF INFLUENCE
Our Circles of Influence are the personal and impersonal forces that surround us and play a significant role in influencing and shaping our personal stories, sense of SELF, process of SELF Creation and world view. Examples include family, friends, economics, technology, media, religion, education etc. There are other factors in our Circles of Influence that are less scientific and measurable as well as far more difficult to define. For some God is a significant part of these circles, while others remain skeptical of God but embrace a universal energy or higher organizational structure or power. In the model that follows, the perforated line on the outside of this model represents the opening and interaction of our circles with something larger than us and less easily defined. This is what some call the “mystery”. For our intent and purpose, and to include all of our reader’s perspectives, we will call this dimension SOURCE and leave it open to an individual’s personal discovery and interpretation.
In the model that follows, SELF Creation plays the primary role at the very center of our Circles of Influence. The focus of INNERTAINENT is in the area of SELF Creation. When we use this term, the word SELF is always represented in capital letters. This is done intentionally to point to and continually remind us of our unconditional and boundless POTENTIAL and possibilities for the future.