Anchoring Calmness

Posted on 12/15/2022

An anchor is an external stimulus that evokes an emotional response. You can anchor any emotional state, from feeling calm, to happy, to motivated. And by anchoring it, you can have access to that emotional state in a matter of seconds, whenever you need it, just by firing your anchor.

Anchoring Calmness Exercise

Firstly, you need to choose your anchor. This needs to be an external stimulus that you can apply yourself. For example, one of mine is squeezing my index finger and thumb together. You can use this one or you can choose anyone you like, for example clenching your left fist, squeezing your ear lobe, or relaxing your hands in your lap. Something that is not too obvious so you can do it anywhere in public, in order to access the emotional state that you desire. Decide what your anchor is going to be and then write it down.

  • Now I want you to think of a time when you felt calm. For me, lying on a sun lounger under the warm sun. It may be in your bedroom, on holiday with your family, or in your grandmothers sitting room. It doesn’t matter where it is just as long as it is a place you associate with calmness. 
  • Close your eyes now and remember it. 
  • See yourself in the picture. 
  • Turn up the brightness. Add colour. Make it clear and in focus. 
  • Bring your mental picture closer to you. Make it bigger. Panoramic. 
  • Step into the picture and step into your body. 
  • See the environment through your own eyes. What do you see? 
  • What do you hear? I want you to hear yourself say “I feel calm”. 
  • What do you feel? Do whatever you need to do to make this mental picture as compelling as possible so you can feel the peaceful feeling of calmness. 
  • Take a deep breath in and then out. 
  • Increase this to a crescendo of calmness and when you feel at your most calm, take another deep breath in and out and then apply your anchor. 
  • Hold your anchor for about five seconds and then you can release it.
  • Step outside of your body and put the picture back in front of you.
  • Open your eyes and come back to full consicousness.

You need to do this exercise a number of times, maybe around five, and then you will be able to apply the anchor and it will evoke the feelings of calmness. The two become linked together. Practice every morning when you wake up and every evening before you go to sleep. This anchor will then be there for you when you need it. In a stressful situation or when you feel yourself getting anxious, take a deep breath and fire you anchor to get an instant feeling of calm.


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