On changing State

The Triad of Human Emotions

#1: Physiology

Emotion is created by motion. Whatever you’re feeling right now is directly related to how you’re using your body. If you slump your shoulders and lean your head forward, you’ll move toward a state of depression. However, the next time you find yourself in a negative state, stand up, throw your shoulders back and take a few deep breaths. You’ll find that you’re able to put yourself in a resourceful state. From this state, you can make stronger decisions and enjoy a sense of certainty that will keep you calm in the face of uncertainty.

#2: Language

Language comes in many forms, one of which includes the questions you ask yourself, either aloud or inside your head. If you ask, “Why does this always have to happen to me?” you’ll create a much different set of emotions than if you asked, “How can I benefit from this?” or “Where’s the gift in this?” or “What’s humorous about this?” The language patterns you run play a significant role in the meaning you give a situation – and the emotion that situation creates in you. When you feel negative emotions taking over, look at the language surrounding your situation. How can you shift it to create a more empowering state?

#3: Focus

Where focus goes, energy flows. And where energy flows, whatever you’re focusing on grows. In other words, your life is controlled by what you focus on. That’s why you need to focus on where you want to go, not on what you fear. When you next find yourself in a state of uncertainty, resist your fear. Shift your focus toward where you want to go and your actions will take you in that direction.

(Tony Robbins)

Fragments from imaginary dialogues

“How can I implement this wisdom?”

Turn it into a mental checklist.

Whenever you find yourself in an unresourceful state, bring the checklist to mind:

Language / Meaning

We can think of this as the macro-checklist.

Every item of the macro-checklist is itself a checklist.”


“Yes. Here’s what it might look like.

As concerns the first:


“Could you expand upon the last two? (Pun intended)”

Expand refers to two things: Posture – extending your spine, standing tall –, and Power Pose – taking up more space.

Move refers to a short burst of intense movement, so movement that accelerates your heart rate. Like Burpees, Jumping Squats, Sprinting… or climbing a tree.

As concerns the second:

Language / Meaning
Say a Centering Mantra
Ask an Empowering Question

This is something you have to experiment with for yourself.

It could be bringing to mind the anchor of your Macro-Meditation [<link; short length]. 
It could be saying ‘Thank you‘, and thinking ‘Beautiful Opportunity‘, and ‘Find the Gift [<link; short].’

Whatever works for you.”

“Is there a difference between expressing it as a directive or as a question?

Find the Gift.
Where’s the Gift in this?”

“Both work. The advantage of questioning, from what I noticed, is that it better activates the problem-solving mode.

As concerns the third:

– on what you can control.
– on the positives (not the negatives).
– on the solution (not the problem).

– on the Big-picture.
– on Possibility.”

“The last two have to do with Meaning.”

“Yes, there’s some overlap between them.

For instance Expand can also be used metaphorically:

Transcend your small self and its lilliputan problems and Expand into your Big / Heroic Self.

The tendency when you’re in an unresourceful state is to contract, both physically and mentally. Expand is meant to counter that. You could think of it as a Mantra-Word. And you can amplify the effect by combining it with Big Thinking [<link; medium].

On top of all this, there’s a meta-cognitive practice: Introspection.

Notice your thoughts and feelings, and the language you’re using, and identify dysfunctional patterns.


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About Dani Trusca

Playfully seeking wisdom

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