Does this scenario seem familiar: you are having a typical day, some things go well, others not so well. In the middle of it all someone makes a comment and suddenly you doubt yourself. You ruminate on the negative and dismiss the good. While this is an adaptive behavior and served us well through much of human history, it’s time to try something new. Are you ready?
Here’s an alternative practice adapted from neuropsychology. There are four simple steps:
1) Have a positive experience. Notice the positive and let yourself feel good.
2) Expand the experience by bringing all your senses to the memory. Feel and hold the image and good feelings for 20 seconds or more.
3) Anchor the good feelings by bringing the image and feelings into your heart or belly or brain.
4) Let yourself absorb the goodness. Imagine the good feelings moving into your cells and expanding around you.
Sometimes people I work with like to link the positive experience to negative thoughts and feelings. I teach a technique to do that. By bringing the good feeling to the pain, they find the pain recedes.
Sometimes we resist feeling good, thinking that we don’t deserve it. When that happens we get to pay attention and learn more about ourselves!
As you practice this over and over with different experiences, you create new neural pathways in the brain and increase your capacity to take in and hold the good stuff.
Give it a try!