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Chapter 3

Vibrancy Healthy and full of zest and enthusiasm for life

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About Vibrancy The reward of vibrancy is more than feeling healthy. It is feeling physically healthy, with a zest and enthusiasm for life. The easiest way to be healthy is to make lifestyle changes that improve your health and use the EBT tools to get to Brain State 1 more of the time. When we’re at Brain State1, it’s easy to eat less, drink less, work less, and love more. Although it’s normal to move among all the brain states in any given day, even spending moments at Brain State 1 have important chemical effects. When you give yourself Joy Points throughout the day and hourly 2-minute vacations by checking in, it’s easier to push away from the table and to get up off the couch. Everything is easier, and health is best in the balanced states. Research shows that 80 percent of health problems are caused by the brain being wired for stress, staying in that 5 state with the stress buzzer stuck on. This method has been in development at the University OF#ALIFORNIA 3AN&RANCISCOFORMORETHANYEARS)T was not until recently that neuroscience validated that how important it is to attain Brain State 1. Brain States 1 and 5 are the two brain states in which the brain’s 60


reward centers are activated, causing surges of neurotransmitters to give us good feelings. In Brain State 1, we experience natural surges of feel good neurotransmitters. They are sustainable, and are triggered by natural lifestyle pleasures or the mental rewards that naturally occur in that state, such as sanctuary, authenticity, vibrancy, integrity, intimacy, spirituality and freedom. In Brain State 5, we experience abnormal highs and lows in neurotransmitters. This can feel good during the highs, but require repetition and are therefore damaging in the long term. That is why stress is making us a nation of addicts because without the tools to beat back stress and access joy, we default to using artificial pleasures that tend to become addictive or compulsive.

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Reactive

Irrational

4

5

Concrete

2

Rigid

Abstract

1

3

Thoughts

State

Overwhelmed

Unbalanced

Mixed

Balanced

Joyous

Feelings

Connected

Spirituality

Merged/ Disengaged

Needy/ Distant

Social

Lost/ Obsessed

Disconnected

Unaware

Companionable Aware

Intimate

Relationships

The EBT Brain States

Destructive

Unhealthy

Moderate

Healthy

Optimal

Behavior


Check In 1. Deep Breaths Breathe into your belly, relaxing more with each exhale. 2. Body in Joy Shoulders back, chin up, a slight smile. Give your brain the message that you are in a state of wellbeing. (Also called Body at 1.) 3. Warmly Observe Yourself See yourself just as you are, with acceptance and without judgment. 4. Ask yourself, “What number am I?” There are 5 states. Check your emotional state, your brain state on a 5-point scale. Have fun with this!

The 5 Brain States 1 Feeling Great! 2 Feeling Good (“OK”) 3 A Little Stressed! 4 Definitely Stressed 5 Stressed Out!

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5. Accept State or Change State? Decide if you want to warmly accept your state or move it up! If you choose to move it up, use the tool that corresponds to your brain state. If it doesn’t work, it’s because you are in a different brain state. Each tool ONLY works for the actual brain state you are in.

Spotlight: Tools for the 5 Brain States 1 Sanctuary Tool 2 Feelings Check Tool 3 Emotional Housecleaning Tool 4 Cycle Tool 5 Damage Control Tool

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Brain State #1: Feeling Great

Sanctuary Tool Take a deep breath Connect to the sanctuary within Feel Compassion for myself Feel Compassion for all living beings Collect a Joy Point

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Brain State #2: Feeling Good

Feelings Check Tool How do I feel? Ask the question, then wait for 20 seconds. Your emotional brain will send a feeling up to your thinking brain. This feeling is the genetically determined most accurate message that can alert you to your most important need. The strongest feeling points to the most important need. Notice that the feelings are very primitive, emotional messages of our most basic emotional and physical needs to sustain our lives. Angry

Grateful

Sad

Happy

Afraid

Secure

Guilty

Proud

Tired

Rested

Tense

Relaxed

Hungry / Full

Satisfied

Lonely

Loved / Loving

Sick

Healthy 66


What do I need? Once you know how you feel, ask yourself, “What do I need?� Wait 20 seconds and your brain will alert you to the accurate answer. Process need: I feel sad. I need to feel my feelings and let them fade. Logical need: I feel tired. I need to get some rest. Deeper need: I feel guilty. I need to appreciate that I am not a bad person. Everyone feels guilty now and then. Do I need support? Last, ask yourself if you need support from others. Asking for support from others increases intimacy and improves the chances that your need will be met.

Would you please . . . go with me to the store? Would you please . . . give me a hug?

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Katherine’s Feelings Checks How do I feel?

(Wait 20 seconds) What do I need? (Wait 20 seconds) To talk about it. Do I need support? Yes, I’m going to ask my friend to listen to me.

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Brain State #3: A Little Stressed

Emotional Housecleaning Tool To use this powerful tool, complete each sentence. Say the first four words, then wait for 20 seconds. During that time, your emotional brain sends you words that complete the sentence. If no words come to mind, that’s fine. Just go on to the next sentence. Once you have expressed the first 4 feelings, negative emotions will fade. You have cleared them away, and will notice your positive ones. Express them by completing the second 4 feelings. Using this tool will often bring you to Brain State 1. The feelings do not need to make sense. In fact, they usually aren’t logical, and often each statement is on a different topic. We are clearing away the emotional clutter of the moment! I feel angry that . . . I feel sad that . . . I feel afraid that . . . I feel guilty that . . . I feel grateful that . . . I feel happy that . . . I feel secure that . . . I feel proud that . . . 69


Felicia’s Emotional Housecleaning I feel angry that . . . I am late. I feel sad that . . . my room is a mess. I feel afraid that . . . Kara is mad at me. I feel guilty that . . . I didn’t return her phone call. I feel grateful . . . to be alive. I feel happy that . . . my job is going well. I feel secure that . . . I am a good person. I feel proud that . . . I am using these tools.

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Brain State #4: Definitely Stressed

Cycle Tool This is the most powerful tool of EBT. It rewires the circuits stored during stressful moments. These circuits cause overreactions and chronic stress. We can nab these circuits and rewire them! To rewire those old circuits, just use the Cycle Tool. It will take a couple of weeks to get the skill down, but then you’ll have this skill for life. The wires stored during stress can only be rewired during stress. So when you are in Brain State 4, it is a moment of opportunity. You can rewire a circuit that causes stress for you. Here’s how to use this technique: Step 1. Just the Facts State what you are most upset about. State facts — not feelings — so that you can ramp up stress and open that wire so you can rewire it. The wire is an unconscious unreasonable expectation, such as: I must be perfect. I must be in complete control. Whatever I do, it won’t work out. I am a bad person. I don’t matter. Let’s nab that wire and rewire it!

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Step 2. Nab the Stress Circuit When you feel really stressed, and can’t stand NOT expressing feelings anymore, then begin expressing YOURFEELINGS4HISISCALLEDTHE.ATURAL&LOWOF&EELINGS Express your feelings: anger, sadness, fear and guilt. This is a natural process, and one feeling “meltsâ€? into the next. Often after three statements of a particular feeling, you become aware of the next feeling.It helps to use very short statements, with strong feeling, so you feel the feelings rather than “thinkâ€? them. I feel angry that . . . I feel sad that . . . I feel afraid that . . . I feel guilty that. . . What is my unreasonable expectation? Check what words come to your mind immediately after you ask the question. What unreasonable expectation is fueling my stress? That’s your circuit! That’s your unreasonable expectation. Step 3. Create A New Circuit Now say the opposite of the unreasonable expectation Often this means putting the word “NOTâ€? into the same 72


sentence. If the old stress circuit was “I am worthless”, then the new one might be: “I am NOT worthless.” Step 4. Strengthen the New Circuit: Grind In Now state the new expectation 20 times. Immediately after you use the Cycle Tool, the wires are open to change. This is the time when you can most effectively rewire your own brain. That’s right! As the emotions cool down, the opportunity to easily rewire the circuit fades.

Maria’s Cycle Step 1. Just the Facts My boss is really demanding and I am tired all the time. I have so much work to do, and I don’t have the energy to do it. Step 2. Nab the Stress Circuit I feel angry that . . . I have so much work to do. I HATE it that I am so tired. I can’t stand it that I have such a horrible job.

I feel sad that . . . my job is so hard. I feel sad that I don’t know what do to about it. I’m sad that I am so tired. I feel afraid that . . . my being tired will hurt my baby. I feel afraid that it will get worse. I feel afraid that I will fail at my job. 73


I feel that guilty that . . . I don’t feel guilty. What is my part in it? Where is my power in this situation? I feel guilty that I keep my feelings to myself. What is my unreasonable expectation? My feelings don’t matter. I have no power. Step 3. Create A New Circuit I DO have some power. Step 4. Strengthen the New Circuit: Grind In I do have some power here.

I do have some power here. I do have some power. I do have some power. I do have some power. I DO HAVE POWER! I do have power. I do have power! I do have POWER! I HAVE POWER! )$/(!6%!,/4/&0/7%2 I HAVE POWER!

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Brain State #5: Stressed Out!

Damage Control Tool When the brain is in a full-blown stress response we are overwhelmed, confused, and either extremely emotional or numb. The circuits that trigger a fullblown stress response are strong. We need to interrupt the wire — to keep the stress buzzer from being stuck on. We state these 10 times to quiet the circuit. DO NOT JUDGE (I will not judge myself. I will not judge others.) MINIMIZE HARM KNOW IT WILL PASS. (It’s just a brain state. It’s just a wire!) This tool is very popular. It provides a basic stress “safety net.” Sometimes, it will take you to Brain State 4, and you can do a Cycle. Other times it can take you to Brain State 1.

Sarah’s Damage Control Do not judge. Minimize Harm. Know it will pass. Do not judge. Minimize harm. Know it will pass. Do not judge. Minimize harm. Know it will pass. Do not judge. I will not judge myself. I will not judge others. 75


Minimize harm. Know it will pass. It’s just a brain state. It’s just a wire. Do not judge. Minimize harm. Know it will pass. Do not judge. Minimize harm. Know it will pass.

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Emotional Evolution: Power The third core circuit of emotional evolution is based on power. During stressful experiences, we move to extremes, feeling all powerful or completely powerless, neither of which serves us well. In that moment of stress, the false generalization that is encoded in the brain is: I have no power. 4OREWIREIT YOUCANDOANOTHER'RIND)N&IRSTSTATE the reasonable expectation, then the essential pain, and finally the earned reward you will receive for accepting it. Core Expectation: I have power. Essential Pain: I am not in complete control. Earned Reward: Vibrancy

I have been accused of being over-controlling at work. At home, I follow along, and go with the flow. When I say to myself that I have power, that feels good, but then I’m afraid it could get out of control. Then I state the essential pain: I am not in complete control. That has a balancing effect. I feel healthier and have more energy.

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Brain Fitness Exercise The natural pleasures of life, those that our ancestors enjoyed, cause natural sustainable rises in the feelgood neurotransmitters. Consider combining exercise with another natural reward like intimacy (e.g., walking with a friend), nature (e.g., going for a run at sunset) or connecting with yourself (e.g., using Emotional Housecleaning or the Cycle Tool while exercising). Joy Foods Our ancestors consumed a diet based on fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and lean proteins, so our genes are compatible with those foods. Check off the vegetables that you like, and bring more of them into your food environment.

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Vegetables Acorn squash

Cauliflower

Artichokes

Celery

Arugula

Chard

Asparagus

Chayote

Bamboo shoots

Corn

Banana squash

Cucumbers

Bean sprouts

Eggplant

Beets

Endives

Bok Choy

&ENNEL

Broccoli

Green beans

Brussels sprouts

Green onions/scallions

Butternut squash

Green peas

Cabbage

Hubbard squash

Carrots

Jicama

Kale

Snow peas

Leeks

Spaghetti squash

Mushrooms

Spinach

Mustard greens

Sprouts

Okra

Summer squash 79


Onions

Sweet Potato

Parsnips

Swiss chard

Pea pods

Tomatillos

Peppers

Tomatoes

Potato*

Tomato juice

Pumpkin

Vegetable juices, 100%

Radishes

Water chestnuts

Romaine

Yams

Scallion

Yellow summer squash

Shallots

Zucchini

Snap peas

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Connection Continue connecting daily. Even 3 minutes will motivate you to practice the tools more often. Check in by telephone, email, or text and share your number of Check Ins, minutes exercised and, if you had a Joy Point, then share it.

Website Support: www.ebt.org Check In Line: 877-765-4JOY

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My Check Ins Warmly Deep Body Observed Breaths at 1 Myself?

What Number Am I?

Accepted My State?

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

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My Progress Check-Ins 1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

7

8

9

10

Joy Points 1

2

3

4

Grind Ins?

YES

Exercise

30

*OY&OODS

9%3

5

6

45

60

Today’s Connection was with _____________

Biggest Accomplishment Today: ____________________________

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My Check Ins Warmly Deep Body Observed Breaths at 1 Myself?

What Number Am I?

Accepted My State?

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

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My Progress Check-Ins 1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

7

8

9

10

Joy Points 1

2

3

4

Grind Ins?

YES

Exercise

30

*OY&OODS

9%3

5

6

45

60

Today’s Connection was with _____________

Biggest Accomplishment Today: ____________________________

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My Check Ins Warmly Deep Body Observed Breaths at 1 Myself?

What Number Am I?

Accepted My State?

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

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My Progress Check-Ins 1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

7

8

9

10

Joy Points 1

2

3

4

Grind Ins?

YES

Exercise

30

*OY&OODS

9%3

5

6

45

60

Today’s Connection was with _____________

Biggest Accomplishment Today: ____________________________

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My Check Ins Warmly Deep Body Observed Breaths at 1 Myself?

What Number Am I?

Accepted My State?

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

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My Progress Check-Ins 1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

7

8

9

10

Joy Points 1

2

3

4

Grind Ins?

YES

Exercise

30

*OY&OODS

9%3

5

6

45

60

Today’s Connection was with _____________

Biggest Accomplishment Today: ____________________________

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My Check Ins Warmly Deep Body Observed Breaths at 1 Myself?

What Number Am I?

Accepted My State?

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

1 2 3 4 5

YES

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My Progress Check-Ins 1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

7

8

9

10

Joy Points 1

2

3

4

Grind Ins?

YES

Exercise

30

*OY&OODS

9%3

5

6

45

60

Today’s Connection was with _____________

Biggest Accomplishment Today: ____________________________

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WFJ Chapter 3: Vibrancy