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How Facebook’s Algorithms Gave Me Super Powers

Updated: May 10

Do you know that you have a super power? Yes, you, you incredible human being, you. You have a super power hidden within you and it’s time you started using it! That super power is your ability to focus. Your mind is the single most important tool in unlocking this power within you and it is the vehicle you must use to start making positive changes in your life right now. The beauty of this tool is that it’s always with you and always within your own control. It’s just a matter of training yourself on how to focus your thoughts. The Power of Focus Have you ever noticed whenever you or someone you know gets a new car that the same type of car suddenly appears everywhere you look? Or you learn about something new, something you had previously never heard of before, but now all of a sudden everyone is talking about it? The explanation is simply the power of your focus. I’ve learned a secret over the years and that secret has literally changed my life. That secret is simply this: whatever you focus on increases. If you want to make changes in your life, you need to realize the power of your mind. Your focus will determine what you are looking at, sometimes quite literally. To give you an example, try this simple exercise right now. Look around you and take note of all the things you see that are the color red. I want you to count the number of all the red items around you. Just take a few seconds to do this right now, and then come back to this article. Go ahead. I’ll wait… Welcome back. Now answer these questions: How many things did you see that were red? Were you aware of how much the color red was around you before you did this exercise? Chances are, you probably weren’t. Now that your focus is on it, you notice all the red around you easily. Now to switch it up a bit – how many yellow items did you notice while you were looking for the red? Probably not too many, you were too focused on counting the red items, right? This simple example shows you the power of your focus. The same method can be applied to anything else in your life. This is how you can begin to change the way you look at things so that the things you look at change! It is simply your ability to look for the things you wish to increase in your life. Finding My Super Power Through Facebook Not too long ago, I was feeling stuck in my life. I was working as a web designer and an IT tech for a local nonprofit organization. While the pay was decent, I felt deeply unfulfilled and unappreciated in my career. I knew that I needed a change, but I couldn’t figure out how, let alone what changes I needed. I would go into work feeling miserable, dreading the tech support calls I would have to answer, and eagerly awaiting the weekend so I wouldn’t have to think about work for a while. This went on for a few years until one day, while I was escaping my daily routine by browsing through my Facebook newsfeed, I noticed something. Pretty much everyone I was following whether they were a friend or a website, was posting angry, depressed or apathetic messages all over my newsfeed. Now, being a former web programmer, I know that the algorithms used on Facebook are designed to show you more of what you engage with. So by liking, commenting or sharing posts on Facebook, their algorithms pick up on what you like. It then shows you more of what you like and less of what you don’t engage in. Seeing so many of the negative messages on my newsfeed opened my eyes. It dawned on me that the problem started with me. Just like Facebook was showing me more of what I engaged in, the Universe was showing me the same thing in my everyday life. My mind was focused on the negative. So naturally, all I saw was the negative. Of course I was unhappy – I was actively engaging in unhappiness! So I started changing my focus, changing my algorithm, if you will. I started small. I stopped following and engaging in negative posts on my newsfeed. I stopped watching the nightly news. I stopped watching commercial television. I stopped watching violent movies. I stopped hanging out with people who complained, whined or who were generally unhappy with their lives but refused to do anything about it. Using My Super Power After distancing myself from the negative, I focused on self-improvement. Anything that did not directly contribute to my own personal growth, I didn’t engage in. I started reading more self-help books. I started watching educational documentaries. I started hanging out with more positive mindset people. I watched uplifting movies and shows. I did things that brought me pleasure: reading, doing puzzles, drawing, listening to music. I started a daily gratitude journal. I started noticing all the great things in my life. My life began to change. It wasn’t overnight, but when I think back on it, it really didn’t take long before I began to notice a huge difference in my mental state. Things became clearer to me. I understood more of what I wanted from life, of my own dreams and ambitions. I finally understood why I was so miserable for so long; I wasn’t focusing on me and on what I really needed. When I took the time to stop and listen to myself and to focus on the things that uplifted me, I began to understand myself and what I wanted. I wanted more from my life, so I used my super power. I focused on the things I wanted to increase and I stopped focusing on the things I didn't like. This led me down a road of radical change and spiritual healing. I had several limiting beliefs that needed to be addressed and changed. It took time, effort and a bucket full of tears, but I never would have even started on that road if I hadn’t found my super power. A few months later, I took a giant leap of faith and quit my job. I started exploring all those dreams I had and following what felt better to me. I got back into my art and my writing and my many, many personal interests. My life has changed dramatically. I have made several more changes since making the choice to use my super power. I no longer suffer from depression and I am in love with life again! I'm doing what I love and adore for a living and I look forward to every day! I am finally living the way I've always wanted and now I look forward to what's next as life keeps showing me more and more good things the more I focus on the good. It started with a simple change in focus and it's something you can do for yourself right now. Start Using Your Super Power If you’re not using your super power, then it’s time to learn. Start small. Start with one little thing that you can change today to help you focus on the things you want to increase. Notice what you are focusing on and how it makes you feel. If it makes you feel terrible, stop focusing there, even if just for a little while. Then, start focusing on something wanted, something that makes you feel better. Maybe, like me, you need to stop engaging in the negative posts on your Facebook newsfeed. Maybe you need to stop counting calories and start eating more enjoyable food. Maybe you need more "me time". Maybe you simply need to start counting your blessings every day (gratitude is the best way to start making positive changes in your life). Whatever changes you can make, I urge you to start today. Begin to use your super power and start living the life you want. Your future self will thank you for it. This quick video by motivational speaker, Tony Robbins illustrates the power of your focus:

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