HOW TO CHANGE YOUR EMOTION
Have you ever had to make a big decision and were stressing on what to do? Have you felt stuck in a rut, down, or depressed…just searching desperately for a breakthrough? (Damn it…you’ve binged through all the current episodes of Game of Thrones!) Have you found yourself searching for clarity, the next step in your life, or just looking for purpose?
Let me share a strategy that is tested through scientific research and has been backed by many successful people as well as sought after life coaches. I can speak from my own experience, this approach has drawn me to laughter, deep thought, and often times tears (all at the same time), because I’ve been so profoundly moved by a kinetic force that I cannot explain. This strategy is so simple, everyone has already done it – in some form or fashion – but I’m going to teach you how to be intentional and use it as a weapon to provide the clarity and purpose you’ve been searching for. If done consistently, it will be a daily habit that will be a game changer for you. It’s this simple:
Combine MOTION with MUSIC and you will create a state that attracts omens, ideas, and feelings that drive you to take ACTION to become the best version of you!
Studies of bodily movement and health show that exercise is good and that sitting is bad. Research also shows that the brain can take cues from body movements to understand and solve complex problems. There is a magical SYNERGY that is created when you align your mind, body, and spirit. In my opinion, the best way to blend all three is when you are moving to music alone away from the clutter and noise from the outside world. This approach will awaken a homing beacon for ideas, peace, and a clarity inside of you like nothing else! I’ll explain why the two are uniquely important and how each are needed for maximum effect.
If you want to change your emotion, you need MOTION. You need to MOVE! If you want satisfaction, you need to take ACTION. You can’t spell improvement without MOVEMENT! Think about times in your life where you took massive action…this focus and drive was generated by being in a specific state or mindset. Some external force whether it was failure, embarrassment, fear, a personal challenge, or maybe encouragement from a parent or coach caused you to go to that place. You can use this knowledge to get yourself into this state or in the “zone” simply by getting physical with your body…go on a walk, run, lift weights, do push-ups, sit-ups, stretch, do yoga…just something with movement.
Exercise has both a physiological and developmental impact on the brain. Studies show that movement and exercise supports concentration, memory, and a positive outlook. From an article in Psychology Today, psychology professor from the University of Illinois Alejandro Lleras says, “The way you think is affected by your body and, in fact, we can use our bodies to help us think.”
Moving your body also alters your breathing. Focusing on your breathing can have significant impact on your well-being and stress levels, and even physiological changes like lowering your blood pressure. According to an article in Forbes, by David DiSalvo, he says that “Controlled breathing sparks brain growth in areas associated with attention and processing of sensory input.” Let’s remember this before you need to make a big decision, need fresh ideas for your presentation, or are trying to solve a complex problem with a loved one…movement and altering your breathing will hep get you there!
Music is one of the top drivers linked with emotion and feeling. Think about commercials and movies…every key scene or part is matched with a type of music to evoke drama, excitement, or action. Music is also linked to memory. Certain songs or music trigger thoughts, experiences, and people associated with pain or pleasure you felt during the general time period of that song.
Music has been found to be a natural antidepressant that can give a euphoric high similar to some medications. Music is also a great mood shifter, as well as helps improve judgment by affecting the prefrontal cortex, which manages emotions and impulses.
Music can make you happy (try Pharrell William’s “Happy”), pump you up (Journey’s “Eye of the Tiger,” from the Rocky films), or relax you (check out my Smooth Jams mix on Spotify). There is just something about playing your jam that just sets the stage to feel gratitude, joy, energy, and optimism.
MOVE. BREATH. THINK. DOMINATE. REPEAT.
Preferably to kick ass music.
The inspiration for most of my ideas that I write about and speak to audiences come from my time alone exercising to music. I live near a big hill that is 2 miles round trip…I love to get up early or later at night when the kids are in bed and go on a walk/run with my head phones. I relish this alone time to pray, give thanks to God, and be open to receive infinite wisdom, peace, and clarity. I use this time to reflect on my goals, and visualize that I already have them. This activity creates momentum that is hard to explain unless you do it for yourself!
Here are my 4 key steps to help you change your EMOTION through MOTION and MUSIC:
- Pick a time in the day to make MOVEMENT a consistent priority – preferably in the morning. It could be as little as 15 minutes. Just do something!
- Movement doesn’t have to be complex – find a strategy that works for you and that you enjoy (dancing, pilates, hot yoga, etc.). I used to belong to a gym just 9 minutes away…I switched a year ago to Tahoma Fitness, which is across the street from my house, which has made all the difference. If it’s not convenient you won’t do it. If you don’t belong to a gym, you can always go on a walk or run outside.
- Pick music that creates feeling and emotion for you – whether you use Pandora, iHeart Radio, Spotify, Apple Music, or iTunes, create a playlist or pick an artist that you LOVE and that gets you going! Be intentional and strategic with what you listen to…the goal is to inspire, motivate, and move you!
- Take time to reflect and visualize – this is where the magic happens. Step 1: Give thanks. Step 2: Visualize your goals as if you already have them. Step 3: Feel the power, confidence, and clarity this act creates. Just this morning by moving and listening to powerful music (today was Coldplay), I was stirred by gratitude and excitement for what’s to come, which lead me to laughter and tears of joy.
Former N.C. State Head Basketball Coach and ESPN analyst Jimmy Valvano once said, “If you can laugh, think, and cry in a day…that’s a heck of a day!” Nothing will help you do this more than combing the powerful combination of movement and music.
There is a reason why church’s all around the world utilize music and worship at the beginning of each service. The act of getting out of your seat, lifting your hands, and singing God’s praises primes you to receive the message and get’s you in the correct state…full of feeling and emotion. Why not try that technique in your life as well to help tackle problems, seek answers, and get your mind right to handle the challenges of life?
Enjoy this song from Coldplay that got me GOING this morning! Thank you for reading…now go attack the day and feel ALIVE through motion and music!