The Priming Effect - Deepstash

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Prime Your Brain for a Permanent Performance Gain (in a Few Minutes) - Steve Pavlina

The Priming Effect

Your mind is able to fill in missing details by matching them to existing information. It also cross-references and bounces between linked associations. This priming effect even works when you are not consciously aware of it.  For instance, you can break an object or obscure part of it, and your brain can still recognize the object.

Be aware that seemingly subtle influences matter. If your senses perceive it, your mind is processing it. A slight change in input can have a notable influence on the outcome.

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Prime Your Brain for a Permanent Performance Gain (in a Few Minutes) - Steve Pavlina

Prime Your Brain for a Permanent Performance Gain (in a Few Minutes) - Steve Pavlina

https://www.stevepavlina.com/blog/2014/03/prime-your-brain-for-a-permanent-performance-gain-in-a-few-minutes/

stevepavlina.com

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Key Ideas

Conscious Priming

Being aware of the priming effect presents us with huge benefits for personal growth. By actively guiding your priming influences, you can create a permanent and lasting improvement in your life.

For instance, writing words on a board like flow, focus, success, complete will prime you to ensure that your work meets that criteria.

Think Improvement, Not Perfection

With the knowledge of how priming is influencing you, don't nitpick every detail of your environment. Pace yourself and tackle the most frequent influences first. 

For instance, prime the place where you spend most of your time. Clear out clutter or put up pictures you enjoy to ensure your office is relaxing and pleasurable.

Prime Your Mind For Quality

  • Get some quality pens.
  • Get a quality timer to prime your thoughts for efficiency, speed and professionalism.
  • Invest in a quality mug that primes you with desirable thoughts.
  • Buy a quality toothbrush. 
  • Buy food of the best quality.

Dressing for Success

Some people recommend wearing nice clothes to prime thoughts like success, wealth, and professionalism. 

Interestingly, wearing nice clothes also primes the thoughts of other people to respond to you in a certain way.

Daily Affirmations

Daily affirmations work to an extent but lose their influence as soon as you stop doing them. Daily affirmations of one kind can be undone if your next step is in the opposite direction.
For instance, telling yourself that you are attracting financial abundance, but then you re-prime your mind with thoughts of scarcity or laziness by checking an overfull email inbox on an old and slow computer.

Using the Best Tools

Your brain is constantly being affected by your environment. Start feeding your mind new input that is in line with your desires.

Remove those influences that pull you down. Don't worry about what you can't do for now. Think of how you can improve, not if you can attain perfection.

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Priming the Environment
Whenever you organize a space for its intended purpose, you are priming it to make the next action easy. This is one of the most practical and simple ways to improve your habits.
Ideas to prime your environment
  • To draw more: Put your pencils, pens, notebooks, and drawing tools on top of your desk, within easy reach.
  • To exercise more: Set out your workout clothes, shoes, gym bag, and water bottle ahead of time.
  • To improve your diet: Chop up a ton of fruits and vegetables on weekends and pack them in containers, so you have easy access to healthy, ready-to-eat options during the week.
Make bad behaviors difficult

If you watch too much television, unplug it after each use. Only plug it back in if you can say out loud the name of the show you want to watch. (Which prevents you from turning on Netflix and “just finding something” to watch.) This setup creates just enough friction to prevent mindless viewing.

Movement

You don't have to do something too intense, just get moving to energize your brain and body.

A regular 20 - 45-minute high-intensity exercise will trigger positive endorphins, spark your meta...

Motivation

Start your day by thinking who you want to be and what impact you want to have on the world.

To help you reach that state of motivation, read or listen to something inspiring.

Meditation

Meditation is a way to focus your attention to your internal dialogue and moving it into the direction you desire.

The more you are able to focus your attention where you choose to, the stronger your mental muscle will become.

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Wanting to control everything

By procrastinating, you hold the most control over whatever task you’re working on. However, this also means, obviously, that that particular task isn’t being done.

Seeing a task as one big project

Almost everything we do can be broken down into little manageable parts.

Take, for instance, the laundry. If the laundry seems like a daunting task to you, break it down into steps. Collect all your dirty clothes. Separate colors and whites. Put your clothes on a wash cycle. Put them in the dryer. Fold them.

Being a perfectionist

It can be tempting to put things off or delay completing tasks simply because you’re worried about the outcome being less than perfect.

Just remember that it’s okay if things don’t turn out exactly how you had them in your head.

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