EMOTIONAL DESTRUCTION

HP

THE ANCHOR

People that do not express their emotions are either social geniuses or potential serial killers.  In America, I would think that 90% of the country are raised to be crybabies or they have a paradigm that the world owes them something.  They may believe that life is only unfair to them. (Not the rest of the world).

The late/great speaker Dr. Stephen R. Covey said that this one line changed his life: “Between stimulus and response there lays a space.  In that space lays our opportunity to decide what our reaction is going to be”.   He felt the key to life was being able to “maneuver in that space”.  He also went on to say something that made me pull the car over and write down: “It’s not what happens to us that effects our emotions; rather our interpretation of what happened to us that effects our emotions”.  Do you want an example?  Take a look at the Ferguson case.  To the open minded, a policeman was doing what he perceived was his job.  (The grand jury agreed).  Yet thousand have taken to the street because they interpret the killing of the 400 pound 18 year old to be a cold blooded racial murder.  (Damned be the facts).  So we see those passionate yet uninformed/bias protesters walking around with their hands up.

Our adrenal glands, which perch atop our kidneys secrete adrenalin.  It’s also known as epinephrine in the pharmaceutical world.  The release of this chemical causes the brain to respond.  Let me rephrase that, when the brain feels this “rush” of adrenalin, it expects a response.  Sometimes it is an enjoyable response if you love rollercoasters and scary movies, and sometimes it’s a defensive mechanism as in “Fight or Flight”.  Whatever the case may be; we have conditioned our brains to respond to certain situations by practice.  We don’t even know we’re doing it.

The deadly emotion is the “Silent Emotion”.  This is a conditioned response that you are not even aware of until you’ve responded.  I recently found myself dealing with a disappointing situation where I didn’t get a part on a Television series.  I was really thinking this was going to be my big role.  It never happened.  But in the entertainment industry, we have a little secret.  When you’re auditioning for something, you never tell anyone.  The reason is, if you don’t tell anyone, when you don’t get the part or the gig, you don’t have any explaining to do.  We also say: “It curses you”.  Subsequently, I caught myself eating half a bag of potato chips on the way home from the store.  Why?  I was dealing with the frustration and disappointment and I wasn’t even aware of it.

So anyone who’s been in entertainment for more than a year and is still trying to knock down the door, you know the feeling of not getting excited about good news, and not to get depressed about bad news.  I believe you need the same paradigm in sales as well.

I’ll give you another example.  In 2004 I was on-line and my wife came to me with the cordless phone and said: “It’s for you.  She said she’s the manager of DOUBLE TROUBLE” (Stevie Ray Vaughan’s band) Tommy Shannon had seen my performance and wanted his manager to get a hold of me and tell me how he enjoyed my performance.  That was it.  The first thing I did was called Terry Anderson who writes for the Georgia Satellites and told him what had just transpired.  I was shaking.  I said: “Should I be getting excited about this”?  Terry said: “NOT YET”.  He knew.  If you ask anyone who has made it in show business: “When did you know that you had made it”?  They’ll usually answer: “There were so many times that I had thought I had made it but really didn’t”.

So what do you do?

Use the Anchor

I think emotions are what make us human.  Love is the highest and most potent emotion of any.  We can’t run from it and we can’t hide it very long.  This accounts for many broken hearts.  If you train yourself not to react to news, what separates you from zombies?  I learned when I was going through hell back in the 90’s about the “Anchor”.  The anchor is a technique I had read about where you take a deep, deep, deep breath and think of your special place.  But you have to take that deep breath.  Now, when disappointment smacks me in the face, I take a deep breath and it takes me instantly to my hide away.  I don’t need to close my eyes and I don’t need to go into meditation.  It’s using the same technique your body does naturally but instead of huffing and puffing, I go to my happy place.  I must admit that sometimes, my happy place goes away, then I’m really in trouble.  The worst place to be is in Apathy.  “No Feelings”.

The anchor works for an instant response.  But what happens when you start thinking about what happened to you hours later?  Days later?  The disappointment may still be there.  They may say that understanding won’t satisfy the hunger, but understanding can help you look for sustenance.  I’m not saying you need to go into denial or go get analyzed. (Although sometimes therapy is a great idea) I’m saying clear your head and try to think about why you’re disappointed. Is the disappointment worth the energy your body is wasting on something that is out of your hands?  That should be the first question you ask yourself.  Can I do anything about it?  THEN, try and learn from your disappointment.  The next time what can I do that might be useful to me?

Remember this!  Your response is indicative of your state of mind.  How you respond is how others will remember you.  If you go into a rant, it may make you feel better for a few minutes, but it might cause a lifetime of sorrow.  The toothpaste will be out of the tube.  This is when the anchor is handy.  Even if your response is insincere, you smile and say, well we’ll get the next one. (Even though deep inside you’re hurting) Your ability to control your response (Maneuver in that space) is what will determine your behavior.  It’s called the mature thought process.

Unbridled negative or positive energy will not serve you well.  Negative energy can destroy you.  Positive energy can blind you.  Use them both as indicators.

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