What is a paradigm and how does it interact or impact with our lives on a day to day basis? Let's understand this term and investigate how it affects us and what we can do to improve our situations through this knowledge.
First of all, that which is just a difficult to grasp term for many can be easily explained in simple terms here. In its most basic sense, a paradigm is little more than a collection of habits (or habitual ways of doing things) that occupies our minds on a daily basis.
We habitually do many things during the average day and they start right from the moment we wake up from our nightly sleep. When you wake up, what's the first thing you do?
I know what I do is I look at the bedside clock almost as soon as my eyes are open and focused. I do it every morning even when I don't even care to know what the time is!
Next I stretch before hauling myself into a sitting position with my legs out the right side of the bed. I pull on my pants and then put on my slippers before getting up to open the drapes. Then I'll go to the bathroom and when I come back, I make the bed.
All this activity is determined not through conscious choice but by habit. I do exactly the same things in exactly the same order every day. That series of habits is what is known as a paradigm!
As the day gets going, I'll make myself a breakfast of oatmeal porridge (good healthy stuff) mixed with a handful of walnuts and cranberries with a sliced banana and a little honey. I'll make very strong, black coffee and while that is brewing, I'll walk into my study and switch on my laptop and draw the drapes ready for the day's work.
I'll go back into the kitchen to get my breakfast and coffee then I'll take them to my study where I will have breakfast while reading my emails and catching up with any information relating to my business via the online forum I use.
As you can see, my day is already unfolding and very little of it was under my direct, conscious control. I merely followed the habits of each day that bring me to my work place, which luckily for me is at my home!
So where do I deviate from other people in the habitual get go of the day?
I know a lot of people will go through a similar routine each morning, but some things will be different. When I used to work for a large corporation, myself and many of my colleagues would spend breakfast reading the morning newspaper.
This would take up a good half hour and it took a long time before I realized that time could be put to much better use. It was even later I realized just how much better that time could be spend and how distracting and ultimately negative that particular habit was.
You see reading the newspaper in the morning serve no useful purpose. It informs people of course, but over ninety percent of the things it informs people of are bad news stories that make them angry, frustrated or depressed.
That's because they are things the reader can do nothing about physically (in almost all cases) aside from experiencing strong negative emotions. In most cases they will often play out a kind of solution inside their heads in the form of an imaginary conversation, argument or out and out fight with the (imaginary) source of their frustration!
Can you imagine what that sustained vibration of energy must be doing to people's health? Now that person starts their day in the worst mood and will radiate out that bad vibe to his work colleagues. If they all read and reacted to the same news stories, that bad vibe will be circling that building for most of the day!
How unproductive do you think people are when they are in a bad mood? Pretty unproductive, I can tell you!
Of course this is one paradigm that can be changed and the change will bring a quite surprising flow of benefits. Simply by choosing not to read a newspaper in the morning, but instead start getting some of the repetitive tasks out of the way first thing, I have not only freed up a good half hour of time that I can spend productively producing ideas and plans that will net me more income, but I have banished the source of much negativity and replaced it with a more positive and productive work ethic.
Run that over in your mind for a while and you'll see it makes an awful load of sense. So much so that you can literally transform your working day and all of your working days by changing that one, destroying habit and replacing it with a creative one.
And that's what paradigms are (in a nutshell), how they can influence your life in a negative or a positive way and how you can make small changes that can result in huge benefits.
Note: Building Blocks for a Consumer Driven Mental Health System: alternatives at work. This page was formerly devoted to this subject in the websites former guise, but is no longer relevant to the new layout and subject base. This page will, however has been populated with more information on health related information on paradigms to provide visitors with a wider scope of understanding.