Stop your shoes now. (If you do not have shoes on it, do not count!) But if you have shoes on now you can not stop finding them – you are very aware of them. Before reading this paragraph, you probably were not aware of your shoes, but as long as you keep trying not to think about them, you are very aware of them. Why? Because suddenly I made it "important" by talking about it and as long as we continue talking about your shoes you will continue to be very aware of them. However, before I bought it, you were completely unaware of your shoes. Your reticular activation system knew that these stimuli were not important and thus filtered out the information so your consciousness would not have to cope with it. And after a few minutes after we've stopped talking about your shoes, your Reticular Activating System will filter out this information because it knows it's not important and you'll again be ignorant of your shoes.
Think about where you are now. Can you hear a cooler turner, runner, fluorescent light, fan from heating or ventilation system, traffic outside, city noise or other background that is common in your home or office. Until I just asked to quit and focus on it, it was insignificant and your reticulate power plant filtered out. The vast majority of the time you do not listen consciously or monitor any of these types of noise, because they are "not important".
For those who read the newspaper, the big city page, can you tell me how many stores had ads for dishwashers on sale on paper on Friday or Saturday? I'm sure you have no idea that someone has even been advertising dishwashers at all. But suppose you go into your kitchen today and find two inches of water because the dishwasher has blown up – how many ads for dishwashers are on sale now? Each one. They will jump off pages on you. Why? Because all of a sudden is important to you. (On the way, Sears has had at least one kind of dishwasher on sale every weekend for the last 40 years!)
A few years ago, our cousin and her husband bought a beautiful, expensive home that is high on Point Loma in San Diego. From the backside there was a magnificent view of the Pacific Ocean, San Diego Bay and downtown San Diego. Interestingly enough, however, it was located right in the San Diego airport take-off. When the 747 would start with all the fires of cooking, it would rattle the windows, the china dishes in China would dance on the shelves and there was no way you could hold a call until the plane had crossed the head and the breast had ended.
My wife and I went to visit them for a year after they had moved into this home. I'm a pilot. I have spent a lot of time at airports. I love planes. There is nothing about airplanes or flights that scare me. We walked in the front door for the first time (not knowing that there was an airport around the back door!) And when we left the room, 747 left. It sounded like it was going to come through the house. I literally stabbed! As I thought, I said, "Who – what was it?" For a while, my cousin had this obvious appearance, like "what the hell is wrong with you?" And then with perfect balance, do not understand why I responded to how I did, he said, "A 747. "I noticed in three days we were there that when the plane started, the family would stop in the middle of the sentence, pause until the plane went over and then pick up the conversation as if nothing had happened. They had been there for a long time that they no longer heard, registered or responded to 747 flying over the house. Why? Because the reticular power system knew it was not important to information – so they were literally deaf. About the third day I did not pay attention to the 747s either.
It's the same reason that people who live by rail or highway never hear what would drive someone else crazy ( until they had lived next to it for a long time). When your Reticle power system knows that effort is not important, it is filtered so you do not have to "cope with it".
For future reference is a great idea here. The information, data, effort, or opportunity you will have to meet the question "Is it important?" before your reticular activation system allows you to become aware of it. The key is learning how to make your goals "important" so you see opportunities around you.
Further information on the reticular power system and related materials can be found at: http://www.godinyourgoals.com