State Management – 5 Steps to Improve Your “State” of Mind, Body & Spirit
Those who live outstanding lives know that every day we cycle through various states. Many states are resourceful, such as contentment, excitement, or satisfaction. Others are un-resourceful states such as anger, resentment, or fear. Your state is caused by the interaction between your thinking patterns, physical well-being and neurochemicals that produce your emotions. Therefore, state management is the key to becoming highly effective.
What is state management? When you alter any of these factors – your thinking, physiology, and emotions – you can alter your state, which in turns gives you the ability to change the quality of the results you receive. As you gain greater awareness of you actions (i.e., posture, breathing, facial expression) and learn to alter these in a way that serves you, you gain the ability to change how you feel.
This doesn’t mean you never feeling negative but it means you have awareness of how you’re being at any given moment and you consciously choose your response.
Imagine having the skills to make the best of any situation. When you spend the majority of your time in resourceful states, you’re more likely to lead a successful and effective life. Remaining in a non-resourceful state, however, only causes you to say and do things that draw tension and complications into your life.
Of course, this is easier said than done. So we’d like to share with you five steps for boosting your state management skills.
1. Identify your state. Make a list of all your states over the next month. Start by checking in with yourself right now and notice your present state.
- How does your body feel (i.e., calm, tired, energetic, excited, tense)?
- What occupies your thoughts (i.e., people, tasks, future, past)?
- What emotions do you feel (i.e., happiness, anxiety, anticipation)?
- What body sensations are they causing (i.e., relaxed, knot in your stomach)?
Once you notice your state, think about how this state limits or empowers you. Do you like yourself in this state? If not, since you’ve identified it, you can now work at changing it.
2. Identify the triggers. Make a list of all your triggers. Track each state back to the moment it begins. Was it something someone did, a memory, or something you did?
3. Neutralize the un-resourceful triggers. Don’t ignore what’s bothering you. Have the courage to confront and deal with it. When you do, you’ll quickly clear out the triggers. If your un-resourceful state comes from past trauma, identify what that state is doing for you. As if talking with a person, internally ask your state, “What is your positive intent for me?” In many cases you’ll discover that you’re protecting yourself from a threat, either real or imagined. Now, you know what issue to address. (It may be advantageous to work with a professional when resolving these issues.)
4. Build a foundation of positive triggers into your daily routine.
- Identify the states that empower you (i.e., harmony, efficiency, creativity).
- Identify their triggers – an event, a person, or a memory.
- Look for common themes among them (i.e., a person, hobby or concept).
- Consciously design a weekly schedule that includes those triggers. Start each day with one and add 2 more throughout the day (i.e., journaling, exercise, meditation, music, friendship)
- Finish you day in a resourceful state by planting a positive trigger in the evening (i.e., nice meal, reading a book, time with a loved one).
5. Advanced state management.
- Alter your mental image. Your state relies on the mental pictures you make about an object or a circumstance. Use all your senses – sight, hearing, touch, taste, and smell as you alter the mental pictures you create – not just what you’re picturing, but how you’re picturing it. For example, in your mind’s eye instead of making the threat larger and more terrifying than it really is, consciously reduce its size and see how your emotions shift.
- Alter your physiology. Change your posture. Smile. Breathe deeply. Exercise or do anything that circulates different chemicals in your system.
- Alter your internal dialogue or self-talk. Keep your inner dialogue uplifting. Be your own champion. If you have an inner critic, give it a voice like Mickey Mouse so you don’t take yourself so seriously.
We’ve found that nothing helps like Neuro-Linguistic Programming when it comes to developing this self-awareness that supports state management. Are you ready to pursue excellence in your life through Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) techniques? You’ll find it accelerates your abilities to think, act and communicate. We invite you to learn more at a FREE Presentation – Choose Life Enhancing Beliefs at 600 Siskiyou, Community Counseling Center, Ashland, Oregon, on August 25 at 6:30 pm.
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