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Reticular Activating System

You will never achieve what you can't recognize. Our brain operates a reticular activating system (RAS) which is a portal that allows almost all information to enter the brain. The RAS is a small piece of the brain that is at the top of the spinal cord and is about two inches in length. All our senses are wired to this bundle of neurons except our sense of smell. Smells are different because they go into the emotional portion of the brain. Our smell brings forth so many memories because it is tied to the emotional part of our brain.

Information funneling

The majority of information received by the brain is funneled through the RAS portal. It also determines which information gains the most attention. It also has the task of ensuring your brain doesn’t receive more information than it can handle. The RAS is responsible for filtering the massive amounts of information that are constantly coming at you. It selects the most important informant for your conscious mind to concentrate. It acts as a much-needed gatekeeper of information. Our conscious mind is able to handle approximately 100 pieces of information every second. This is much less than the barrage of information our bodies receive every second. The RAS gives the most attention to your name, things that threaten your survival, the information you may need immediately, and information out of the ordinary. The evolutionary process allows it to distinguish between relevant and irrelevant pieces of information. The reticular activating system is important in attention, goal-achievement, and survival. It is also uniquely suited for you. Genetic expression allows you some control over your reticular activating system. The information that is funneled to your brain may not receive the same priority of attention of the person next to you. Because of this genetic expression, the RAS is also important in motivation and goal setting. 

Too many people never seem to achieve the success they so desperately desire. The lack of or wrong information may be getting through the RAS portal. There are certain types of information that seem to get through with greater frequency. As mentioned earlier your name, things that threaten you, immediately needed information and novelty information. Our brains are literally wired to bring these things to the forefront of our consciousness. The RAS considers them important. This is reticular information.     

Reticular Information

People often never achieve their goals because their goals have not become reticular information. The reticular activating system filters out the necessary ingredients of their success. You may not eat cake if you bake a cake and leave out the flour. A car will not travel without fuel, love requires emotion, water requires oxygen, and success has requirements as well. Are you recognizing the ingredients for your success or are you waiting for your lottery numbers? Do you know what the elements of your success are? Are you able to recognize the elements of your success? Do you know what your success looks like? Your success requires ingredients that must be recognized and become reticular information. Once a person recognizes something new to their experience it seems to multiply and is seen by them frequently. A person rarely notices a particular car style until they want to purchase it as their own. Then that particular car can be seen everywhere.  Once you notice a rarity it seems to become common. Success is much the same way. Recognition of success and the requirements of that success become more frequent once they become reticular information. 

Action step:  

1) Hack your Reticular Activating System.

2) Pay attention to what you recognize as important to you.

3) Attach your name to your goals.  

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