We know that attitude and behavior are two key indicators of success. Those that exhibit positive attitudes and behaviors tend to exhibit higher levels of joy and achievement.

But what we might not also realize is that our attitudes and behaviors are deeply affected by our memories – or our interpretive recall of past experiences. Although memory is already an imperfect processor of past events – recent research suggests that we can edit or rewrite our memories for our benefit. In other words, we can strengthen our good memories and weaken our bad memories to increase motivation and propel us further toward success.

attitude-quotes

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How to weaken bad memories: ↓

  • Bring a bad memory to the forefront your conscious
  • As if watching a picture on TV, watch the memory become smaller & dimmer
  • Add details that scramble your interpretation of the memory
  • Repeat this process 5-10 times

How to strengthen our good memories: ↓

  • Recall a good memory
  • Picture it vividly on a huge screen
  • Amplify your sensory experience of the memory (make it vivid in color or loud)
  • Experience the positive feelings associated with the memory
  • Repeat this process 5-10 times

Check out: Achieve More in Less Time

Why should we edit our memories?

Editing our memories has positive implications for anyone that wants to increase their motivation – but also for anyone that wants to decrease the residual effects of negative memories. As demonstrated by the work of neuroscientist Daniela Schiller in memory reconsolidation, editing negative memories can be beneficial for those who have undergone traumatic past experiences or suffer from debilitating disorders, such as PTSD.

In addition to memory reconsolidation, techniques such as visualization and meditation work well in processing the emotions affiliated with past experiences. Check out The Clean Method for some of my personal favorite affirmations and meditations.

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