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.