This was a clever little idea that I took from poker mindset trainer and life coach Sam Chauhan.
Sam is a mindset trainer that many professional poker players have gone to and swear by. Sam has an extensive list of clients including non-poker pros as well. After working with Sam, many professional players have had some great runs in tournaments that they credit Sam for helping them with.
Big poker tournaments can span over many days and it can be extremely hard at times to focus on the game for that long. One lapse of judgement can cost you your entire tournament and investment of time.
An excerpt from an interview with Sam:
“What are some of the techniques you use to help people overcome this?”
Chauhan: “I’ll give you an example. A lot of people have negative thoughts while they’re playing or negative thoughts in general. And hey, we go through challenges, we’ve all gone through challenges–especially with the way the economy has gone over the past few years. But, negative thoughts don’t really help you. Negative thoughts actually push you deeper into depression. So one of the techniques that I show people is to have them put a rubber band on their wrists. And as soon as they have a negative thought about something I instruct them to pull back the rubber band and snap it. What happens is the brain has to focus on the pain of that wrist, so it has to get away from that negative thought, and now you’re consciously aware that the reason you have pain on your wrist was because of that negative thought, which forces you to think more positive. That’s one way where you can break that pattern instantly. And if you do this constantly, your brain will begin to change your thought process about these bad thoughts. It’s a technique that has worked really well for a lot of people I’ve worked with.”
I have personally tried this and it certainly does work.
I am able to stay focused at the tables longer and I don’t care as much about getting unlucky as I used to. When I first started playing online poker I probably broke close to 5 mice after taking some really nasty bad beats.
No longer does that happen.
I don’t even get upset anymore, at all, ever. Poker is game that relies on luck and I have gotten over the fact that I will get unlucky in the worst ways sometimes.
The rubber band technique has also worked for me in other various aspects of my life. Any time I have a limiting belief about myself such as “I can’t do that!” or “That’s way too hard!” I snap the band as hard as I can to tell my brain that those thoughts are no longer welcome in my head and if they arise again, you will have to experience a nice little pluck my from my friend on my wrist.
Don't Worry, Be Happy!
An added element to this method that I personally added is every time I pull the band, I think of something I am thankful for. This replaces the negative thought with a positive one, further increasing my positivity level throughout the day.
I also think of something I am thankful for every time I notice the band on my wrist. If you think of how many times you look at your hands during the course of the day, you can see how many times you have the opportunity to think positive.
I have been able to rewire my mind to be almost 100% positive at all times.
There are still times when I pull it but it certainly isn’t as frequent as it used to be.
Give it a shot.
Put a rubber band on your wrist and try to notice when you have a limiting belief about yourself. Give it a good pull and make sure you feel it to get the full effect. Your little monkey brain will be tamed, and you can instill a powerful empowering belief system!