“The brain is made up of three parts: instinct, emotion and thinking,” Enoka said. “What often happens under pressure is that your thinking shuts down so you are relying on emotion and instinct. That in turn means you can no longer pick up the cues and information to make good decisions.”
“To pull yourself from red-head back to blue-head thinking you need to give yourself an anchor to refocus your attention.”
“These anchors have to be immediately accessible but are different for each individual so Thorn would throw water over himself, Richie McCaw would stamp his feet, Kieran Read would stare at the farthest point in the stadium. All these strategies re-engage the player in the moment and back into blue-head mode.”
And these strategies individual players have trained themselves in and pulled off last minute heroics when it counted most.
So what anchor can you use to pull yourself into Blue Headed Thinking, out of the thinly resourced brain state of the Red Headed Thinking?
I like the one Buddhists do with their thumb and forefinger. They hold their fingers in a touching position, much like the “OK” symbol, during their deep meditation with the intention of creating an ‘Anchor” with their hand position. During the day, in times of stress, they put their two fingers together to access their bank of peace and equanimity.
Want to be a Blue Headed Thinker, in hot pursuit of your goals? Email me.