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Looking for Perspective in the Face of Tragedy

  Steve Scanlon     Jul 12, 2016

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It was a hot August day in 1963. Dr. Martin Luther King valiantly stood in front of a crowd of over a quarter million people in Washington, D.C. and told the world that he had a dream. In order for that dream to be realized, people of all races, colors and creeds were going to need to think differently. Eventually, we would need to act differently. But if all we needed to do was “act” differently, then Dr. King would have laid out a plan and not articulated a dream.


It is almost 53 years later and, remarkably, we need to be reminded, yet again, that we need to think differently. I want to say up front that, yes, Rewire is a company dedicated to helping businesses and individuals go through change by changing how they think. But after observing the violence and the atrocities of the past week, it strikes us that, as individuals of this free land, we all need to rewire how we think if we want any chance at the kind of lasting change Dr. King spoke of. Businesses. Government. Non-profits. Individuals. Everybody.

 

Many of our readers have heard us in our workshops talk about the lizard brain. As a simple refresher: We use the paradigm of the lizard brain as a way to explain human behavior shaped by the brain’s drive to survive. We have developed a curriculum that expresses this lizard brain through four main characteristics:

  1. We look for FAMILIARITY
  2. We all look to BE RIGHT
  3. We all form and repeat HABITS whenever and however possible
  4. We seek to CONTROL

(Each of the above links will take you to articles on that specific topic)

In light of the past week, can we not absolutely see how our individual lizard brains (when loud and ruling our thoughts and actions) are affecting our world? We watch in horror as individual police officers think they are RIGHT when they abuse and kill people. We then see people kill (or attempt to kill) cops because now they believe they are RIGHT to punish those they see as responsible.

 

And in light of the past week, can we not see how contrary to Dr. King’s message this all is? His message was about the struggle to overcome injustice with love and that God indeed created men and women of all colors equally. But guess what? If the lizard brain is loud, then we simply cannot hear or heed the message.

 

Until we have the courage to change the way we think, that which is unfamiliar to us will forever threaten us. We will violently pursue being right over sacrifice. We will succumb to old habits that could and should die off. Finally, we will conduct ourselves very poorly if we feel out of control.

 

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Here at Rewire, we absolutely subscribe to the idea that you can make your business and life better by learning about the lizard brain. Today, I want to propose that this change in thinking is not just for our own well-being but also for the well-being of our country. The future is indeed bright. But in order to have that bright future come, we must rewire the way we think. Join with us as we change the world by changing how we think.

 

Peace to us all.

  Lizard Brain

Steve Scanlon

Written by Steve Scanlon

Steve Scanlon is the Founder and CEO of Rewire. He loves to see people change the way they think and enter new seasons of growth for their work. If you have a couple of hours, ask him about his new golf swing.

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