This Hypnosis Exercise Will Make You Happier in 5 Minutes
Updated: Dec 22, 2018
We are what we think and our life is a reflection of that. Here's how to train optimism.
Do you ever feel like your brain is in control of you, and not the other way around? Well, it's all too common. Our brains are our greatest tools, but if used improperly, they can paralyze us with fear.
If our greatest tool is using us, instead of us using our greatest tool, how do we take back control? The fact is, we are not our brains. We are the ones controlling our brains. Read that again. You are not your brain, you are the one controlling your brain. You wouldn't let a hammer use you to build a house, so why let your brain control your behavior? With our brain, like any tool, it's in the technique of using it. Fire can burn you, or cook your food, depending on how you use it. So how do we best utilize the tools we have?
If our brain is our greatest tool, then what materials does it work with? Our brain understands and interprets our world through our five senses. It is through this interpretation that we form our understanding of reality. We understand our world, good or bad, with our senses. This becomes clear when we realize that people often speak in sensory experience. "Look on the bright side!", "This is a dark day", "Something doesn't smell right here."
Our world is our sensory understanding of it, and our memories are our bank of sensory experience. The memories we focus on, we associate with. Slowly but surely, we focus on one kind of memory over another, and soon we associate with those memories. Soon we associate with those feelings. Think about the person who only associates with their negative memories, while dismissing their positive ones. They will feel depressed and defeated. Now think about the person who only focuses on their shining moments. They will feel confident and optimistic. We can choose to control our experience. We can choose to identify with our good memories, and de-emphasize our negative ones. This simple process can change the way we see ourselves, and change the way we see our world.
So often our most difficult and painful memories are given all the power, while our greatest moments are diminished and pushed to the background. We can tend to overemphasize the bad and de-emphasize the good. Think of the person who refuses to accept compliments but will completely absorb any unkind words. Optimists and pessimists live in the same world. The only difference is in how they choose to see. The key is to choose. If you are aware enough to realize that you have a choice, then you can make the empowering one.
Hypnosis allows us to get right in the middle of our brains process of understanding and choose to go left instead of right; up instead of down. Here is an exercise that can have a profound effect.
Take a quiet moment to yourself and think of a negative memory. Something that gives you a shiver of regret, or just something unpleasant. Look at it as if you were seeing it on a screen in front of you. You can do this with your eyes open or closed. See how big the image is, how bright or dim, how loud, if there's a frame around it. Does it have any other sensory input? Taste, smell, sound, sight, feeling? Once you're looking at that memory, begin playing around with the sensory input. Make the image smaller. Push the screen back so it looks like a 1950s TV across the room. Make the memory blurry. Put it in black and white. Mute it. How does it feel different? Keep adjusting the screen until it feels weaker. Repeat this with five negative memories. Be sure to open your eyes and shake your body out between memories. Dim and diminish five negative memories. You're training your brain to put less weight on these unpleasant times. Shake your body out. Stand up. Move around. Smile. All this changes your state and allows you to focus with a fresh perspective. Now think of a positive or empowering memory. Picture it on a screen in your mind. See, hear, feel, taste, smell the memory as best you can. First see the memory through your own eyes, in the first person perspective. Amplify the sound, make the memory brighter, bigger, more rich with color. Do this with five positive memories. Make them stronger, brighter, bigger, more vivid. You are training your mind to put more importance on your positive moments. Notice how you feel. Check your work. Think of those negative memories. Are they weaker? Think of the positive ones. Are they stronger? Shake it off. Change state. Try again with more memories.
How did this exercise work for you? Any questions? Feel free to reach out.
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