Chapter 1 Why Let It Go?

Chapter 1: Why Let Go?

Your ‘blueprint’ is the operating system that runs you. It’s the web of invisible, habituated thought processes that governs your reactions to every situation. As a result, it is the single biggest influence on the way you experience life and the world around you. Your blueprint underlies all of your relationships, your view of people, your perception of what’s possible.

The trouble is that for the vast majority of people, this operating system is deeply flawed.  To run with the computing metaphor a little further, it’s full of glitches, bugs and viruses. When a computer is new, everything works perfectly, just as when you’re born, your blueprint is clear.   But what happens when you’ve had your computer for a while? You may accidentally download a virus. The computer only does what you tell it to do. You don’t purposely download viruses. But the faulty software (Blueprint) will then cause the computer to malfunction. It may stop “talking” to the printer. You might blame the printer, but it’s not the printer’s fault.

Likewise, the faulty thinking that’s become part of your blueprint comes with its own convincing disguises (personality traits, bad luck, hard bitten wisdom, other people’s problem). Over time, these insidious thought processes have become amalgamated into your thinking and have corrupted your logic. You’ve grown to accept the skewed version of reality they offer you as ‘just the way it is.’


Blueprint ——- T——-F ———actions behaviour re-act

In the simplest terms, if you’re thinking good thoughts you will feel good. So when you wake up and think ‘It’s a lovely day, the sun is shining!’ your mood is positive. Your reactions to whatever happens to you will stem from that happy feeling. Similarly, if you’re thinking: “all men are bastards!” when you go on a date, no matter how much you’re hoping it will go well at a conscious level, you’re likely to be primed, subconsciously for your date to slip up, or say something to confirm your worst suspicions. You have a check-list in your mind to tick off, reinforcing the thought that “all men are bastards”.

Here’s another example: imagine you’ve gone to a pub, and you accidentally knock over a pint of an angry man. How is the angry man going to react?  His blueprint is primed for rage. There could be any number of reasons for this. He thinks angry thoughts, subsequently feels angry and therefore when his pint is knocked over he reacts angrily.

Now I want you to consider your own pattern. Have you ever thought, or heard yourself say the following....

‘I have such bad luck with money/  men/ work’

‘The world is full of angry/ lonely/ impatient people’

‘I’ve never been any good at public speaking/ organisation/ ideas’

‘If there’s flu going around then you can guarantee I’m going to catch it!’

All of these thoughts are examples of a faulty blueprint. The symptoms of this are the limiting and negative things you’ve decided about yourself, the world, and other people. You weren’t born thinking this way. Instead, as a consequence of things you’ve experienced, many of them years ago in the distant past, you’ve unconsciously latched onto these negative perceptions and nurtured them, thereby  ensuring they become self-fulfilling prophecies. They become your beliefs. Your B.S. (Belief system that is…)

There’s a phrase I like to use a lot: Where Focus Goes, Energy Flows. It’s one of the Power Statements I’m going to introduce in Chapter two. It’s fairly obvious when you think about it, but surprisingly easy to forget: The more you ‘feed’ something, whether it’s positive or negative, the stronger it gets.  Partly this comes down to confirmation bias (once you’ve decided on something, you see proof of it  everywhere), but it’s also a question of practice. You’ll get better at the piano if you devote time every day to practice. Conversely you can also get very good at putting yourself down, and as a result decrease your self esteem slowly over the years, draining your self confidence. How you think ultimately is down to you. How then can you change the way you think? That’s where the Blueprint Process comes in.

Altering your blueprint can lead to dramatic shifts in everything from self-esteem to relationship satisfaction and workplace success. Once you free yourself from your filter of negative and distorted thinking, new possibilities will offer themselves up to you.

The good news is that it isn’t necessary to delve deep into your past and pick over the  fossils of past hurts, striving to understand who did what and why and how you feel about it all. Of course, there is a place for this, but it requires a surfeit of time, money (all that therapy), and patience (nothing is likely to get solved any time soon).  For the rest of us, it’s perfectly possible to facilitate deep transformations in thoughts and behaviour by committing to choose healthier, more productive ways of thinking. View it as a project, practice your new habits every day, and you’ll see a difference quickly.

If you’re unconvinced, consider the following analogy: You’re driving along one day and your tyre runs over a sharp nail. You get a puncture and have to pull over. You have a number of choices about what to do next.

Do you stand there and examine the nail for the next 3 years?

Do you stare back down the road from where you came and wonder

what if…

‘I’d left home at a different time I could have avoided this?

‘I’d driven a different way, perhaps I wouldn’t have driven over the nail?’

‘I’d stayed at home in the warmth of my living room?’

Maybe perhaps you should be just fixing the tyre and moving on in your journey…

People are experts at looking back down the road from where they came and examining it repeatedly. What does this do? It simply means that they don’t move on their life as they’re too busy looking at the past.


The Let It Go is option 2. It’s a far better use of energy, resources and time than option 1. Both approaches are likely to reduce your chance of repeating the same mistake again, but when you’re consumed by the quest to unpick complex emotional wounds of the past, like an emotional archeologist, you can easily get stuck. It’s the ultimate distraction from the present, from the business of living, and if you aren’t careful, can leave you hanging in a state of suspended animation, indefinitely postponing moving on until you’ve tied up all those loose psychological ends.  Which could take...... forever.

My aim, with this book, is to enable you to draw up a new blueprint for yourself that enables you to react in a way that serves you better. Simple.  

The chain of command:

Blueprint   Thoughts Associated feelings   Behaviour/ reaction

The key point here is that the blueprint underpins your thoughts. It triggers your thoughts themselves, and colours your perception of everything you witness. When you suffer from anxiety, or depression, your blueprint is conditioned to reinforce the dysfunctional view of the world by triggering more and more anxious or depressed thoughts. Of course, these feed back into the blueprint, strengthening your conviction that the world is a worrying or depressing place. This is why it’s so powerful.


It might be a little linguistically ugly to split this word in two, but it’s a helpful way to unpick what’s going on every time you think, feel, do, or say something in response to a stimuli whether that’s a situation, another person, or a piece of information. You’re ‘re-{en}-acting’ a stock response, based on your internal state and the behavioural habits you’ve honed over time (your blueprint). You’re bringing a whole lot of psychological baggage to each and every interaction you have and the first step to freeing yourself from the habit is to acknowledge it’s happening.

Lets take an in depth look at what your blueprint is made up of:

  • Your Values
  • Your Beliefs
  • Your 6 Human Needs
  • Your Fears
  • Your Memories
  • Your Blame System

These are the ‘files’ that make up the software package (your blueprint) that tells you how to think. This in turn controls the way you feel; and that defines the way you behave, act or react at any given moment. So if you are in a good mood, you are thinking positive thoughts and any action you take is based on this optimism.

So altering your blueprint is multifaceted. It involves a readjustment to your values, beliefs, human needs, fears, your perception of your memories and your inbuilt blame system. It’s deep, and complex, but also simple, as it all comes down to one question: ‘What do I really think, feel and need?’ If you follow the exercises in this book, it’ll walk you through this process and give you the tools you need to make it work.

All of that sounds analytical, but it’s actually the opposite of that. So much of a faulty blueprint is made up of skewed self-talk and bad logic - overthinking that has its own complex language and structure. The key to the process of letting go of all of this is to get back in touch with your deepest instincts and common sense. At first, it comes down to a leap of faith. A ‘just do it’ acceptance of  the power statements. Through daily commitment to these, a new clarity will emerge. You’ll be able to see your fears, faulty thinking and blame-complain patterns and view them with a new detachment. Likewise, you’ll develop a fresh conviction in the values and needs that really matter to you.

The process outlined in this book is sequential and teaches wisdom through repetition. As you work through it, you’ll learn new tools that will work together to help you rebuild a healthier, more functional blueprint. Don’t skip over any of it, work through the book in order and stick with it.

Approach this project with the unquestioning tenacity of a toddler learning to walk. She falls down, gets up again and keeps on going time and again. She doesn’t think ‘I’ll do that next week...’ or, ‘I need to think about this a bit more before deciding on whether to try again...’ There is no procrastination, no ‘I’ll do it later,’ to kill her aspiration.  

This isn’t to say that you won’t stumble on the way. But failure is part of the process. So long as you keep on going, you’ll get there. The biggest obstacles in your way are your fears - they come in many guises, like bespoke saboteurs intent on disrupting your attempts to get on with life. They’re like those annoying faulty ‘pop ups,’ you get when your computer has downloaded a virus, but many people have become so conditioned to them that they accept them as reality.

Fear has many faces and flavours. Fear of not being good enough. Fear of failure. Fear of the past. Fear of the future. Fear of dying. Fear of being ill. Fear of uncertainty. Fear of being found out. Fear of being exposed. These fears pop up in an instant and are often triggered by the most off the cuff remark, insignificant request or suggestion.

Behind all of these fears are memories. I think it’s helpful to think of these as the clips and videos saved onto a Sky Box/ Tivo style filing cabinet in your mind. They’re available to replay whenever you want to review them. But the difference between your memories and the recordings in your Sky box is that your memories all have feelings and emotions attached to them. Many of these emotions are negative, and fuel your fears and paranoias.

It’s the nature of the blueprint to try to weave all of these memories and associated emotions into a coherent narrative, to spot patterns and refer back and forward within the memory bank, drawing dissonant fragments of your life experience together to reinforce your blueprint and confirm the very fears that limit you. There’s a voice, constantly saying: ‘See, I told you you were like this…’ Or: ’There you go, people always behave like that…’

Diagram / Image

Let’s call up a good memory to watch the process in action. Close your eyes and recall a great holiday you’ve had. Perhaps there was a perfect day on the beach that sticks in your mind, or a relaxed evening out with your partner or friends where you drank cocktails and dreamed of future plans? Just thinking of those memories is likely to make you feel happier, a little bit lighter, even when you snap back to the present.  

So it makes total sense that the more time you spend inhabiting negative memories, the more these will bring you down. I’m not concerned with the memories that you have. I can’t change them, and neither can you, but you can stop re-living them all the time so that you don’t automatically ‘call up’ fears and negative reminders.

Once you resolve to accept the past and move on and apply the Power Statements to your daily life, you will begin to see a powerful shift in the way that you experience life.

By the end of this course you will be thinking differently. Not only that, but your awareness will have shot up. Your bullshit radar will be sharper. You’ll notice other people’s negative behaviour with increased sensitivity. This will then result in you wanting to make changes in your life which may include decisions regarding the type of people who you socialise or associate with. Do negative people energise or drain you? The people you surround yourself with will have an influence on you , so choose them wisely. You’ll also have a new perspective on the negative things in your life that you’ve previously written off as ‘not in my control,’ to - as once you start to alter your reaction to a situation or another person, the whole dynamic is likely to change.


Next Chapter: Chapter 2 The Power Statements