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Pause Your Machinery: A Frog in Hot Water

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Stop and take a moment to “pause your machinery.” The concepts and techniques I present throughout my latest book, Your Mind Is What Your Brain Does for a Living, require mindfulness to learn and master, and this brief written exercise will give you the opportunity to rest, step outside the pattern of passive reading, and bring yourself into the present moment to reflect and see how the information I want to share with you can be integrated into your own life.


Keep your written answers, because they will be valuable for you to review and refer to later. You may want to buy a notebook or open a computer file so that you can keep all of your responses together in one place.

  • Think mindfully about whether you’re currently in a frog-in-hot-water relationship (with your significant other, mother, father, or other family member, or friend) or a frog-in-hot-wa¬ter situation (such as a job). Do you see the potential for a rela¬tionship or situation to become a frog-in-hot-water experience? If so, describe in writing what elements of the relationship or situation are persistently causing you pain or have the potential to do so. Also describe how long you have been experiencing these problems.
    If you’re in a frog-in-hot-water relationship or situation, describe the reasons you are staying there and what is preventing you from choosing Door 1, 2, or 3.
    If you’re in a relationship or situation that could potentially become a frog-in-hot-water one, write down the factors that you recognize as determining qualities. What signals tell you to stay? Which ones tell you to change? Describe your role in having created the relationship or the situation as it is right this minute. Then define the role you see for yourself in the future in influencing it either to become a frog-in-hot-water relation¬ship or situation or to avoid becoming one.

As long as my lack of resolve kept allowing my machinery to run me, I couldn’t choose Door 1, 2, or 3; I couldn’t resolve the arguments or end my pain. Why did I lack the resolve to change? And how did I eventually develop it? I’ll answer these two vital questions in the following chapters, but let’s first look at the process by which we can allow our machinery to make us frogs in hot water, even when we desperately want to stop being in pain.


An excerpt from my recent book, Your Mind Is What Your Brain Does for a Living, now available at Amazon.

  • 16 Feb, 2015
  • Posted by Steve Fogel
  • 19 Tags

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