Cen­tred­ness Ex­er­cises

Rotman Management Magazine - - NEWS -

Each of the three steps of cen­tered­ness will al­low you to in­ter­act more proac­tively with your phys­i­ol­ogy, ad­dress­ing each as­pect of your tri­une brain in suc­ces­sion.

• STEP 1: Set­tling into your body

sig­nals to your prim­i­tive brain that you are safe and mit­i­gates the au­to­matic fight-flight-freeze re­sponse. To prac­tice this, first, bal­ance your­self, cre­at­ing phys­i­cal sta­bil­ity in your body. Sec­ond, ground your­self to firmly con­nect your­self to the earth. Third, breathe deeply to bring at­ten­tion to your cen­tre of grav­ity and to calm your­self.

• STEP 2: Sens­ing

is the abil­ity to no­tice the phys­i­cal in­for­ma­tion that your lim­bic brain (es­pe­cially the heart and gut brains) trans­mits in re­ac­tion to emo­tional stim­uli, such as a tight chest, short­ness of breath and but­ter­flies in your stom­ach. Sens­ing en­ables you to name the emo­tion con­nected to that phys­i­cal sen­sa­tion, and iden­ti­fy­ing the emo­tion al­lows you to be­gin manag­ing your re­sponse. By sens­ing, you are gain­ing ac­cess to and us­ing your lim­bic brain sys­tem, rather than al­low­ing it to op­er­ate en­tirely on au­topi­lot.

• STEP 3: Shift­ing

is the men­tal process of cre­at­ing dis­tance be­tween your emo­tions and ac­tions through a change in per­spec­tive, in essence adopt­ing a po­si­tion of neu­tral ob­ser­va­tion. Neu­tral ob­ser­va­tion oc­curs when you move back and step up from the emo­tions you no­ticed and named while sens­ing. This shift is the cir­cuit breaker that al­lows your neo­cor­tex (the ex­ec­u­tive brain) to en­ter the process and con­trol your re­sponses.

Learn­ing and prac­tis­ing each of these three steps will al­low you to wisely choose your course of ac­tion and guide your be­hav­iours in sit­u­a­tions of stress or emo­tional in­ten­sity. Fur­ther­more, these three steps will en­able you to bring your full set of in­spi­ra­tional lead­er­ship skills to bear in your ev­ery­day life.

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