Its opinion is strong and difficult to ignore. To get to the top, to complete the journey, we must silence that voice, pluck it out of our minds, and let it fall to the depths of oblivion at the bottom of the cold, dark well where it belongs. Only then can we hear the one voice that radiates truth and justice--a higher voice that has learned from a lifetime of turmoil. It whispers, "You are good, you are worthy; stop the insanity!" We must decide for ourselves to stop the insanity so defeatism will take its grip off our spirit and let us crawl to freedom. "Many of us have a cruel voice that dominates and is intolerant of rational thought. That voice is the one that tells us that we are nothing, that we don't matter." Being determined means pursuing our true purpose with passion and conviction. There is always a light at the top of the well. At the top is something magnificent and beautiful: our true purpose lies there. Visualize that light above. When you get there, what good will you do? Who will you help? What difference will you make? We're getting to something actionable here. Hang on. Immediately prior to achieving sudden insight, there is a phenomenon called a "brain blink." At the moment of insight, the EEG showed a massive burst of gamma waves. But for about one second beforehand, the brain emitted alpha waves. Alpha is slow; the neurons aren't processing information. If you imagine an automobile engine, the authors contend, "The car is working, but it isn't going anywhere. Alpha is a neuron's park." The brain idles, ever so briefly, preparing for insight to strike. Say I ask you a challenging question that requires a moment of thought.

What will you do when I ask it? Will you look away from the distraction of the article for an instant? Perhaps close your eyes? The reason you do this is because a large part of the brain is dedicated toward visual cognition. Vision can dominate our neural processes, making it more challenging to determine the answer to a difficult problem. And the burst of alpha waves cuts off visual inputs for a moment, so you can better focus and achieve sudden insight. In a 2009 study published in Current Directions in Psychological Science, Kounios and Beeman discovered that when the brain is about to come to a solution via insight, brain activity directs attention inward. We're not looking to the outside world to find the solution; we are engaged in "retrieval." We already have it stored in the biological equivalent of RAM. The brain is using the anterior cingulate, which is involved in detecting weakly activated, subconscious solutions, to neuro-google the answer. How is this actionable? It reinforces the diversionary aspect of racking one's brain until stuck, then doing something distracting to take your mind off it. Give your brain some peace so it can process the information. This next part is cool. I glance at Grandma's house and see myself as a little girl cuddling with her on a porch chair. Such warm, vivid memories I have of her on that porch! I close my eyes and my imagination takes over. I am walking down the pathway leading to the porch. The walkway is lined with purple and pink flowers that sway in the breeze. The porch chair is weathered with small cracks. Yes, I see them now: my initials carved into the armrest.

I smell the familiar scent of lavender and know without looking up that Grandma is there, sitting patiently waiting for me to jump into her lap and tell her about my day. The birds are singing a sweet melody as I remember how her strong arms wrapped around me in a reassuring embrace. As the breeze brushes across my face, I think, Yes, we are all placed on this earth to bring two things to individuals who have lost their way: love and light--the essence of the soul. When we're in the dark and the cold, we should be acutely aware of the power that shines from above. We've talked about the light at the top of the well. That light is the love and light of many of those in our lives who wish us well, who shine light on our path, who make each successive foothold and handhold easier than the last. We are never truly alone. The first factor has been addressed. It is key since the hallucinatory content is not an arbitrary mental experience concocted inside the head, but can always be traced back to the external world. Hallucinations are a form of perception. The last two factors are linked together. They hint to the cognitive and neural underpinnings of hallucinations. Whenever normal causality is disrupted, the influence of remote events is greater. This account does not address the selection mechanism of the events one hallucinates or dreams. Neither does it address the apparently significant organization that dreams often show. This account addresses a preliminary but fundamental issue about dreams and hallucinations, namely why and what one experiences. Both questions are not addressed in neuroscience and in psychology. Once these questions are addressed, various mechanisms can be taken into account to explain why a particular selection of past events is active. The theory of active mind does not address why one dreams a particular combination of objects and events, but rather why one experiences something at all. Leave your music and phone at home.

Try running outside rather than at the gym - your senses have more to connect with outside. Begin by taking ten mindful breaths as you walk along. Become aware of your body as a whole. Build up from normal walking to walking fast to running. Notice how quickly your breathing rate changes, and focus on your breathing whenever your mind wanders away from the present moment. Feel your heart beating and the rhythm of your feet bouncing on the ground. Notice whether you're tensing up any parts of your body unnecessarily. Enjoy the wind against your face and the warmth of your body. Observe what sort of thoughts pop up when you're running, without being judgemental of them. If running begins to be painful, explore whether you need to keep going or slow down. If you're a regular runner, you may want to stay on the edge a little bit longer; if you're new to it, slow down and build up more gradually. At the end of your run, notice how you feel. Try doing a mini meditation (described in the first section of this article) and notice its effect. Keep observing the effects of your run over the next few hours. We are surrounded by an energy that comforts and lifts us to new heights. Look for it. Feel it and move on. Push forward with determination--a determination fueled by guts, grit, and stamina. I have it in me. We all have it in us.

We just need to feel it and realize its power. Only then are we able to move forward in our lives with purpose. This energy is a positive force that cannot be stopped. "We are never truly alone." I recall my daughter's first steps as a toddler. She would crawl over to the couch, pull herself up, steady herself, and then let go. I would watch with anticipation as she would take one shaky yet incredibly determined step--and then fall. Did she give up? Oh no, not my girl! She would crawl back to the couch and start the process all over again. You could see it in her eyes: a strong, unshakable purpose that would not be swayed by temporary obstacles. As we continue to climb skyward, we must be honest with ourselves and really analyze what we want in life. We have to shed the charade once and for all and pursue what we are meant to do. "We have to shed the charade once and for all and pursue what we are meant to do." I usually only get a chance to go swimming when on holiday. But when I do, I really enjoy practising mindful swimming. The experience can be very meditative. Begin with some mindful breathing as you approach the pool. Notice the effect of the water on your body as you enter. What sort of thoughts arise? As you begin to swim, feel the contact between your arms and legs and the water. What does the water feel like?