It’s crucial to be aware of anchoring because it is always going on around us. If you are aware when it’s going on, you can deal with it and change it. If you’re not aware of it, you’ll be mystified at the states that come and go seemingly without reason. Let’s say there’s been a death in a person’s family. He’s in a state of deep grief. At the funeral, a number of people come over and touch him sympathetically on the upper part of his left arm, offering condolences. If enough people touch him in same way, and he remains in a depressed state while they do, that kind of touch in that location can and many times does, get anchored to his depressed state. Then, several months later when someone touches him there with the same kind of pressure in a completely different context, it can set off the same feeling of grief and he won’t even know he’s feeling that way.
Have you ever had an experience like this, when all of a sudden you’re depressed and you don’t even know why? Chances are you have. May be you didn’t even notice the song playing low in the background a song you’d linked to someone you used to love a lot who is no longer in your life. Or maybe it was a certain look somebody gave you. Remember, anchors work without our conscious awareness.
Let me give you a few techniques for handling negative anchors. One is to fire off opposing anchors at the same time. Let’s take that anchored feeling of grief at the funeral. If it’s anchored an opposite feeling your most powerful, resourceful feelings in the same place on your right arm. If you trigger both anchors at the same time, you’ll find something remarkable happens. The brain connects the two in your nervous system; then any time either anchor is touched, it has a choice of two responses. And the brain will almost always choose the more positive response. Either it will put in the positive state, or you’ll go into a neutral state (in which both anchors have canceled each other out)
Anchoring is critical if you wish to develop a long lasting intimate relationship. For example, N and his wife Becky travel together a lot, sharing these ideas with people all over the country. They consistently go into powerful positive states, and often are looking at or touching each other during these peak experiences. As a result, their relationship is filled with positive anchors whenever they look at each other’s faces all those powerful, loving happy moments are triggered. By contrast, when a relationship gets to the point where the two partners can’t stand each other, negative anchors are many times the reason. There’s a period in many relationships when a couple may have more negative than positive experiences associated to each other. If they are seeing each other consistently while in those states, the feelings get linked; sometimes just looking at each other makes them want to be apart. This especially happens if a couple begins to fight a lot, and if, during those angry states, each makes statements that are designed to hurt or anger the other. These intense states get linked to the other person’s face. After a while, each of them wants to be with someone else, maybe someone new, someone who represents only associated positive experiences.