What exactly is “priming”? How can moving your body help you induce a desired emotional state?
According to Tony Robbins, priming is creating your desired state of mind by stimulating your body. For instance, if you want to improve your focus, you could lean forward; if you want to feel happier, you could force a smile.
Here’s how you can control your mind by controlling your body, according to Tony Robbins.
Tony Robbins: Control Your Mind by Controlling Your Body
According to Tony Robbins, your mental and emotional states are closely linked to what your body is doing. For example, someone who’s afraid will probably be tense, have an elevated heart rate, and breathe quickly and shallowly—these are all physical responses to the emotion of fear. However, the connection goes both ways. This person can bring his fear under control by relaxing his muscles, sitting up straight, and taking slow, deep breaths; a physical state associated with calmness and confidence.
The same goes for any mental or emotional state: You can create the state you want by recreating the physical cues that go along with it. Just as your body naturally reacts to what you think and feel, your brain naturally reacts to what you do with your body.
(Shortform note: Recent studies have confirmed a link between physical cues and mental or emotional responses. Psychologists hope that they can take advantage of that connection to improve patients’ mental health—for example, they might be able to trick patients’ minds into thinking that upsetting situations are actually happy or pleasant by having them smile at stressful stimuli.)
According to Tony Robbins, priming can help you influence your emotions with short-term bodily mastery, as explained above. However, a major part of taking control of your life is through long-term bodily mastery—or in simpler terms, physical fitness. A strong body is a source of endless energy, both physical and mental; you can use that energy to help you accomplish your goals.
|Some Benefits of Fitness|
Regular exercise has many proven health benefits—both physical and mental—of which increased energy is only one. Some other benefits include:
Better sleep. Tiring yourself out with exercise helps you to get higher quality sleep at night, which in turn helps you feel rested and focused during the day.
A stronger heart. Exercise boosts cardiovascular health, helping your body adapt to stress more easily. In other words, physical exertion won’t feel so tiring anymore, and you’re more likely to have energy left at the end of the day.
Improved mental health. People who exercise regularly are less likely to suffer from mental illnesses such as depression, anxiety, and addiction; in fact, exercise is often recommended as part of an addiction recovery program.
In short, a strong and healthy body helps promote a strong and healthy mind.
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