H.A.M.R.: Hand Actuated Mental Reconditioning
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Perception of Fear: When confronted by a threat, your brain reacts instantly by flooding your body with 'fight or flight' chemicals. You can alter the release of the chemicals by changing your perception from seeing danger to feeling safe.
One trick is to reinforce thoughts which point out other possible meanings to go with the situation; meanings other than that of peril. It is very important to reduce the amount of stress in your life. There are things that you should be afraid of, but if it goes too far there can be consequences to your health.
So first you need to consider the situation that brings about the terror. Then, whilst holding this situation in mind, you will explore other ways of looking at the situation; ways that make it seem not-so-bad after all. When you find one: reinforce it with the Hammer on the spot.
As you work towards finding the proper Hammer, do not reinforce a thought unless you can really tell that it makes a difference. Often it will take some time and creativity to find the right one. The thought you select should extinguish the feeling of anxiety like a bucket of water on a candle. Take no prisoners.
Here is a real-life example that worked splendidly: my wife Jane had a fear of swallowing pills. For no apparant reason, the thought of one getting stuck in her throat loomed over her. It made her life, for a few minutes a day, a miserable, living hell as she followed her vigorous routine of eating vitamins. Sometimes it was so bad she took five minutes just to get down a pill. My secret worry was that her fear might actually cause her to choke; there were a few scary incidents.
One day Jane had enough, and she considered the situation well. She thought of it from the angle that, over the course of the years, she had swallowed thousands of pills successfully, and not ONE of them had ever gotten stuck. For some reason this was the thought that did the trick. Her fear evaporated when she looked at it that way, so she hammered it into place.
Jane conquered her fear that day (without my help, I might add), and the problem has never been back. These days, when she thinks about swallowing pills, she feels power coursing through her veins instead of terror. Case closed. Women rock.
Another example: a person we know was in terror of another person. Realizing that the scary person was actually an idiot who could be easily manipulated did the trick.
Reaction to Fear: During a reaction to danger you need to be smooth, fluid and have your wits about you. You need to quckly and clearly formulate a strategy for avoiding, or dealing with, trouble.
I am reminded of an experiment with rats and electric shock. The rats were housed in a cage that had a colored pad underneath the food dish. Every so often the rats heard a tone that was followed by a shock coming from the under-foot pad. The rats quickly developed a fear response when they heard the tone. When they learned, however, that moving off the pad upon hearing the tone saved them from discomfort, the fear response disappeared. Learning the proper action was all it took to eliminate the fear.
A healthy fear in most of today's societies involves vehicles on roads. If you know what to do and follow precautions everything should be fine, but mistakes can be costly in the extreme.
As an example: Imagine a person who, due to being run over as a child, is deathly afraid of cars. When a car comes this person freezes in fright, an act which actually adds additional danger.
So to affect a cure the person considers and plans a solution; get out of the way quickly and carefully. Watch for cars. Look both ways, etc. Adding a hint of anger towards cars would also be of use; anger is a mobilizing force.
(1) Reinforce Angle from Which Danger Does Not Exist
Consider a situation in which you have a strong fear reaction. Think of the situation from different perspectives until you find one that wipes-out the anxiety. Reinforce this perspective.
CASE: Think of a scary situation
See the situation from a non-threatening viewpoint
The Hammer
(2) Model Someone Who Skillfully Escapes the Feared Situation
Like with almost any situation there are a variety of Hammers to use. In this case we will look at a strong unconcious-motivator type.
Think of the scary situation. Think of a person who is very impressive and deals well with this kind of scenario.
On the STR (right) hand, feel envy of this person and a desire to be like them.
On the other side pretend for a moment that you actually are this person.
STR: Feel envy and desire to emulate the skilled person
Pretend to be the skilled person
The Hammer
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