What if I said you could change your mood, attitude and thoughts instantly with a simple tool? One moment you feel tired and bummed out, the next – you’re a shining beam of confidence and energy. Just snap your fingers and feel like a champion.
By the end of this post, you’ll be able to do all that and much more.
The best part is, I’m not even trying to sell you anything! I’m giving you this tool for the low, low price of $0.00. It’s called “Anchoring.”
Anchoring is what links an internal response (a mood, a state, a feeling) to an external stimulus. Sounds fancy, but your life is actually full of Anchors.
Does a song remind you of a special time or place? That’s an anchor. Does a venue remind you of all the good times you had there? That’s an anchor. Does the sound of your alarm clock fill your heart with dread? That’s… You get the idea.
The good news is, you can create and use anchors for your own advantage. When I used to be shy about talking to girls, I anchored “confidence” to a touch behind the ear. Every time I felt bashful, I would use my anchor to overcome my fear – and it worked!
Too much work?.. If only you had an anchor for “Productivity”!
Picking a Stimulus
We’ll begin by creating a positive-state anchor. Choose an anchoring stimulus and a keyword for your desired state. For the anchoring stimulus, pick an action that requires no external objects, e.g. touching your nose.
When picking a stimulus action, make sure it’s something you don’t usually do. Let’s say you rub your nose often: anything you anchor to that motion will soon become contaminated and useless. Here are 2 motions I use for anchoring:
1) Pressing my middle fingers together
2) Placing my index finger on my neck
Picking a Positive State
Once you’ve chosen a stimulus action, pick a positive state. I recommend choosing a single power word to describe it. The more powerful and meaningful the word, the better: freedom, confidence and power are all good.
For our example, I’ll give you the instructions for anchoring “Confidence” to a touch behind the ear. If you want to use another state or trigger, knock yourself out; just adjust the instructions as necessary.
- Think of your power word: in this case, confidence. Imagine, in as much detail as possible, what it would be like to be confident. How would you act? What would you say? What would you be able to achieve? How would other people treat you? Use your imagination; daydream if you like, and involve all your senses – sight, smell, hearing, etc – in the fantasy. Experience all the positive emotions that being confident would make you feel.
- Once you have a clear and vivid image of what a confident you would feel and be like, gently press your index finger behind your ear and keep it there. Make a brief list of the most important benefits being confident would give you.
- Imagine the confidence you want – and all the benefits it could bring – becoming a part of your life. Think: “I am confident!”
- Remove your finger from behind your ear. Imagine waking up tomorrow morning and going about your day with your newfound confidence. Once again, visualize vividly: how will you act tomorrow? What will you see? What will you hear? And how awesome will your life be now?
That’s it; you’ve just created a confidence anchor. Now, you can go into superhero mode at will by pressing behind your ear. It’s that easy! One last thing, though…
Think of your new anchor as a glass of water. You can’t keep drinking from a glass without refilling it; the same is true with anchors.
If you keep using the anchor to return to a positive state, you will exhaust it very quickly. That’s why it’s important to “re-fill” it as often as possible. This is best done when you are in your desired state naturally.
So the next time you wake up feeling confident, touch yourself behind the ear. As an alternative, you can always repeat the exercise to make your anchor a little stronger.