There are many techniques that can be used to opt for conducive dimensions whilst giving up nonconducive ones. The following list suggests some of these techniques. It is by no means complete and exhaustive. It should be updated as needed, depending on the situation, on where you are at with your Intrinsic Practice and on the level of your proficiency with its tools. Also, it can be updated with any established or novel techniques that you might glean from other methods.
When choosing technique for GO, you may want to proceed first with basic dimensions like Soma, Emotion, Thought and Doing, and then with Mechanisms, Intrinsicness and finally Notion. This is a useful sequence that goes from the simplest to the most complex. However, the sequence must not be set and rigid. Eventually, you may start with any dimension and proceed in any order, depending on the situation.
Once you have chosen one or several techniques, start learning how to use them during your Weekly Time or during the time you set aside specifically for that purpose. You may, for example, have to read about them in more detail in self-help manuals or watch videos from credible sources to learn how to use them. Once you know how to use them, practice with them during your Daily Time and/or during the situation they have been chosen for or at any other time you choose.
Over the next few sections, we will consider Opt for and Give up techniques for each of the dimensions.
Let’s take a look at Opt for and Give up techniques for Soma.
Transcript (.pdf, 126 Kb)5m 24s
It is hard to feel well or happy when our body is not well. Achieving a minimum of physical wellness is often a prerequisite for psychological wellbeing and for any practice that enhances the experience of happiness. As such, it can be useful to start by defining for yourself what this wellness should be, if only in terms of physical comfort, energy and alertness. Try to define the minimal physical health that you must sustain for your health and wellbeing in general and your practice more specifically. This minimal state could then be conducive to happiness in any situation and stage of your practice.
One way of doing this is by creating an “envisioned state” of physical wellbeing. To do this, recall, imagine or envision a state vividly—with all its physical sensations of being well rested, having physical energy, feeling strong, agile and fit, etc. This envisioned state can then become a state to opt for. Spend time to do this and write out the “envisioned state” in as much details as possible as a reminder and a goal. Once this is done, achieving this conducive “envisioned state” usually depends on the use of the right type and amount of movement, alimentation, substance and sleep. The mnemonic MASS may be useful here, encompassing Movement, Alimentation, Substance and Sleep.
Here are some pointers on considering these to achieve a state of physical wellbeing:
After having considered these four parameters, go back to your “envisioned state” and sketch out a program in support of it with each of the MASS parameters. Make it as simple and gently achievable as possible. For example, it may consist of adding some exercise routines, modifying some of your alimentation, cutting down on some of your alcohol and/or caffeine consumption and adding more time to your sleep schedule. Start modestly and progress slowly and steadily.
At the soma dimension, giving up often goes hand in hand with opting to do something else. Examples include trading less sleep for more sleep, being sedentary for moving and exercising, eating poorly for a healthy diet, etc. You have to stop doing what has not sustained you or what has undermined your physical wellbeing. However, focusing only on attempting to not do something that opposes wellbeing usually does not work. It simply creates a lack and maintains the focus on what should not be done.
It is more effective to focus on the “envisioned state” and to do more of what will achieve and sustain it. As you do this, do less of what has not been conducive to your physical wellbeing. Gently and consistently do more of the desirable, whilst gently and consistently doing less of the undesirable. The gentler the technique, the better because you are more likely to adhere to it, and it is more likely to be effective, even if progress takes longer to achieve. Gentleness combined with commitment and constancy is most likely to lead to success. As explained in Step 3, unhealthy alimentation, substance use or even habits of physical mobility can often be used to compensate for unpleasant experiences and conflicts that result from opposing mechanisms. Being aware of and understanding the effects of opposing and compensating mechanisms and applying the appropriate corrections at all the dimensions impacted can facilitate giving up the compensatory unhealthy alimentation, substance use or movement habits.
Let’s take a look at Opt for and Give up techniques for Emotion.
Transcript (.pdf, 144 Kb)7m 56s
At this dimension, similarly to soma, an effective exercise means to, at a minimum, achieve the experience of calm or joy in the Thoughtfulness exercise of Step 1. Once that is achieved, there are several techniques that you could use to elicit the emotion you have envisioned as conducive to happiness. These are some of these techniques, among others you could discover from sources other than this method:
Often, opting for the envisioned conducive and wanted emotion is sufficient to move away from the evidenced non-conducive and unwanted emotion. However, this is not always the case. The non-conducive, unwanted emotion may be hard to move away from. For instance, it may be hard to move away from emotions such as fear, anger or sadness even as you practice opting for joy, peace, etc. You might also experience a tendency to use opposing mechanisms to actively lessen or neutralise the non-conducive unwanted emotion by ignoring it, pushing it away or even directly fighting it. This approach usually does not bring about the intended result. Opposing a non-conducive emotion often puts attention on it and may even strengthen it; it does not result in giving it up. In such case, these techniques may be useful:
Let’s take a look at Opt for and Give up techniques for Thought.
Transcript (.pdf, 126 Kb)4m 50s
Transcript (.pdf, 130 Kb)6m 52s
The main goal is to be able to exercise logic and rationality, perspective and objectivity, based on facts about self, others and the world in general. Often, the techniques to arrive at this capability are the capability themselves. For example, to be able to think logically often means practicing being logical. Nevertheless, the following can be useful techniques:
As described above, to give up is the quasi-opposite of to opt for. That means giving up not doing proper fact-finding, not being able or neglecting to do a sound analysis of facts, being biased and thinking negatively. It also means giving up imagery that prevents sound problem or situation-solving. As with the dimension of emotion, opting for solid factfinding, analysis and positive problem-solving is often sufficient to move away from unwanted thinking and imagery. To more specifically give up some types of thinking that may not be conducive to happiness, some of the techniques below may be useful:
Let’s take a look at Opt for and Give up techniques for Doing.
Transcript (.pdf, 121 Kb)5m 02s
Doing pertains to the demeanor, actions, behaviors and speech that we display. Depending on what you have envisioned, the technique could be as simple as dressing differently, speaking differently, being more or less active, being more assertive or attentive, talking more or less, being more polite, courteous or kind, etc. The aim is to envision the types of behavior conducive to happiness, in fairly specific detail according to the situation. When this is done, some techniques can be useful to opt for and enact the behavior you have envisioned.
As for the soma dimensions, giving up here often goes hand in hand with opting to do something else. Examples may include dressing appropriately instead of inappropriately, speaking gently instead of aggressively, etc. But it also means to not do what you clearly know to be non-conducive to happiness in a specific situation or in general. Sometimes, doing less of what is not good is the simplest effective technique. There is no magic formula other than consistently, even if at a gentle and progressive pace, not repeating what you have realized is non-conducive to happiness. It takes commitment and some discipline to not engage in and repeat actions that are not conducive to happiness, but it is achievable, especially when you do what is conducive to happiness.
Let’s take a look at Opt for and Give up techniques for Mechanisms.
Transcript (.pdf, 128 Kb)5m 39s
For any situation you would be working on, you would have already envisioned the dimensions that are conducive to happiness and that you want to experience because they are aligned with the elements of your definition of happiness. Thus, the main mechanisms to opt for are those that support these dimensions and that help to practice them. A simple way to proceed is to choose one or more such supporting mechanisms from the list of words in the Appendix “Supporting Mechanisms” and to use it or them for practice. Several mechanisms that are conducive to happiness are, however, worth highlighting. They are very powerful and always available to us:
In order to give up a mechanism that opposes your attributes, ethic, values or any experience that may be non-conducive to happiness, it is essential to first identify it. You might find the list of “Opposing Mechanisms” in the Appendix useful for recognizing the mechanism or mechanisms you may be using and for learning more about it or them. Once this is done, you will be able to choose a supporting mechanism instead, in as gentle a process as possible. Here, too, there are some mechanisms that may be useful:
Giving up on the use of one or more opposing and/or compensating mechanisms is often more effective when done along with opting for a supporting mechanism. It is more effective to give up opposing mechanisms gently, as you opt for supporting mechanisms. For example, you could decide to not act out in anger at a discomfort you are experiencing as a result of not having developed confidence in yourself. This can be positive in itself, but imagine how much more powerful it would be to not only give up the acting out in anger but to also simultaneously choose to be confident and strong.
The techniques here are fairly simple. They consist of remembering to bring to a situation PEACE elements or MINDSET dimensions that are envisioned to be conducive to happiness. This technique involves being in the Inside-Out rather than the Outside-In mode. More specifically, it means to act in a situation rather than to react to it. This would mean bringing conducive experiences to a situation rather than looking for them in the situation. To this end, there are some techniques for opting for and giving up that can be useful.
Let’s take a look at Opt for and Give up techniques for Intrinsicness.
Transcript (.pdf, 131Kb)5m 57s
To be in the intrinsic (inside-out) mode means to bring resources from within you to a situation. Thus, you first have to recall what is available within for you to bring to the situation, namely your PEACE elements and any dimension that may be conducive to happiness. In doing so, these questions may be useful:
To be in extrinsic (outside-in) mode implies expecting to get experiences of happiness from a situation, rather than from within. In giving up such a mode, some questions may be useful:
As defined earlier, a notion is a concept or a belief about ourselves or our world. It is a representation of who we are or of what the world is that influences how we experience our life, situation by situation. We may be aware of notions and consciously lead our life by them or, very often, be unaware of them and be unconsciously led by them. You learned in Step 3 how to formulate notions by crafting sentences about yourself that may start with, “I am…,” “I have…,” “I am not…,” “I will be. . . when…,” sentences about others that may start with “She/he is…,” “She/he is not…” or other sentences about things, places, etc. that may start with “This is…,” “This is not….,” etc. You also learned in Step 5 how to use this approach to evidence notions you hold that are non-conducive to happiness or to envision notions you could hold that would be conducive to happiness. Once you have envisioned a notion that is conducive to happiness for a certain situation, there are techniques that may be useful to opt for it. Conversely, there are techniques that may be useful to give up notions that are non-conducive to happiness. These techniques are described below.
Let’s take a look at Opt for and Give up techniques for Notion.
Transcript (.pdf, 134 Kb)6m 58s
A notion you have envisioned about yourself, others or the world in general can be opted for with several techniques that include
Notions that you have evidenced as non-conducive to happiness for any given situation may be more easily given up by using techniques such as
We have now reviewed some of the techniques that can be used for Step 6 for opting for conducive PEACE elements or MINDSET dimensions and Giving up non-conducive ones. As you practice using these along with the tools from the first 5 Steps, you will be able to increasingly enhance your ability to experience happiness.
Over the next few weeks, choose specific situations to work on as described in Step 5 and use the techniques of Step 6 to opt for conducive PEACE elements and MINDSET dimensions and to give up non-conducive dimensions as you have just learned to do.
As with Steps 3 and 4, this could be done for a past, present or future situation. For example, you may recall a situation you have been in and do a retrospective evaluation of it, evaluate a situation you are currently in or evaluate a situation that you foresee being in. The same rule of practice may apply, that is, starting with situations that are simple, easy to be in, current and fresh in your memory and progressively extending your practice to situations that are more remote in time, not as fresh in memory, are more complex and harder to be in.
Once you have done this, you could also consider reviewing your PEACE element as learned in Step 2 to make some adjustments. Likewise, you could use the WORLD tool to review some aspects of situations you have been or will be in and take some action to make them more conducive to happiness. Having worked on yourself first for Steps 5 and 6 will put you in a much better position to change things around you, in your world, for some situations. This can be done role by role if necessary.