#164 Create an anchor

So being able to change your emotional state at will is a pretty awesome superpower, and guess what, we all have it!

We link certain movements, sounds and actions with certain emotional states. They are like triggers.

Rather than letting all of these triggers be unconscious, and just drifting along with whatever mood you happen to be in (and when you're in pain a lot, it's rarely good) you can choose to take control of your emotional state by linking a specific emotional state to a specific movement and sound. In NLP it's called anchoring.

It's done in four easy steps: (adapted from a version I found at this blog)

1. First you bring yourself into the state you wish to feel. For example "joyful". Can you ever remember feeling joyful? What did you look like last time your were really intensely joyful? Say if you had some amazingly good news for example? Adopt the same posture and movements you were using at the time. Stand the way you were standing, breathe the way you were breathing and have the same facial expression you wore when you felt overjoyed. Exaggerate!
Imagine that you can see what you saw, hear what you heard and feel what you felt. Now intensify your state by making your fantasy larger and brighter. Make the sounds that you heard at that time louder and closer and say to yourself what you would say if you were in that situation now. Would you clap your hands? Would you bounce up and down, would you nod your head?

2. At the peak of the state, apply your anchor - that is a movement and a sound that you wish to associate firmly with this feeling. Once you have made the feeling "Joyful" come to life and you sense that you are at the peak of your state, apply your anchor! Use both a movement and a sound, for example clapping your hand or clenching your fist while saying  "YES!"

3. Break the state and repeat step 1 and step 2 several times. Break your state by thinking something else, then repeat the first steps of getting into a joyful state, intensifying it and at the peak, applying your chosen anchor. Keep on doing this over and over again at least 10 times. This is to make sure that the anchor is associated firmly with the feeling. 

4. The final step is to test the anchor. Again, get into a neutral state. After that, apply the anchor that you’ve created just now. You anchor can be clenching your fist and shout “Yes!” So do the state of confident comes to you when trying out your anchor? If yes, then you have successfully installed the anchor.

The best way to test out your anchor is in a real situation when you are feeling down. Next time you're feeling under the weather, fire off your anchor to get you back into your positive state, and notice how it lifts your spirits instantly!

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