This is not exactly a book review but since I’m currently reading the updated version of the classic Psycho-Cybernetics by Maxwell Maltz I felt like sharing some of the life-transforming ideas included in this gem of a book. This book promises to provide us with tools and tips to “steer your mind to a productive, useful goal so you can reach the greatest port in the world, peace of mind.”
I admit to being skeptical as I started reading this book, since my ego played a part in saying that I already know this stuff and especially knowing that this book was written circa 1950’s. But as I pushed on I realised that this classic was basically the beginning of everything we are reading now on wellness, mindfulness and extracting the potential of our sub-conscience minds.
Self-image, a term we are so accustomed to using and reading about, was originally adopted and made popular by Maltz himself. He explains that our perceptions of ourselves are what drive us to succeed or fail, and the book is chock-full of tools and techniques to help us improve our self-image by visualisation, relaxation, and re-shaping ourselves mentally.
Even though I have still a few pages to go before I finish reading this marvel, but one exceptional (and very simple) idea stopped me and prompted me to write this little food-for-thought. The author discussed the notion of visually or mentally building up a calm-room in our minds that we can escape to whenever we feel the need to de-clutter our thoughts and gather our wits. He’s basically promoting a positive and recharging form of escapism. He encourages us to visualise this room to the tiniest detail, to imagine the furnishings, the colour-scheme, the scenery outside the window, and to make it a habit to visit this room daily.
We all feel overwhelmed by ‘external stimuli’ or by any external circumstances that we are subjected to or going through; that we often find ourselves reacting inappropriately in certain situations and regretting this later on. So what the author is saying is that if running away from it all or locking yourself up are not options, then work on constructing this imaginary room in your brain so that you can escape to it whenever you feel the need. Even when you’re in the middle of the hustle and bustle of everyday life, before you go to your next engagement take a couple of minutes to step into your calm-room to clear your thoughts, calm your nerves and just to simply reset before embarking on your next task.
Funnily enough, as I was reading this, a rustic yellow-walled room came to mind, with a four poster bed, a fire place and green fields outside the windows. Even though I still have to perfect the details of that image, but I plan to train myself to visit this room as often as I could if this means it will help me deal with whatever life throws my way.