My UM has been ‘triggered’ 🙂 and I am researching as I am writing folks and some if this is new to me but very interesting. I share it with you as part of a focus to help all become more discerning practitioners (in the context of marketing we would be called yoga consumers ~ brrrr shiver!!). NO DOUBT 🙂 many of you know more about this stuff than I do. What prompted this bit of researching? I couldn’t quite put my finger on it but it really frustrates when I see ‘consumer psychology’ being used in the Yoga world particularly where it undermines what others are trying to do in the same ‘wellbeing arena’. If you have faith in what you do why not just sing the joy of what you do and let it grow from there.
A blatant example of consumer psychology that everyone knows about was the mcdonalds Vs. burger king ad wars that consisted of emulation and undermining. Very toxic (think what the word war means). The kind I am writing about here is more subtle or you might say wily.
My understanding is that decisions are made in your subconscious mind far before you are consciously aware of them. This explains why people will often say I am going on a diet (conscious) and by the end of the day stand at the checkout and buy a giant bar of chocolate; that person having been worn out (subconsciously) by exposure to different aspects of a chocolate brands marketing whilst waiting in the checkout queue. Their subconscious picked up on the environmental cues and that prompted their conflicted behaviour.
‘Marketers’ use subconscious ‘triggers’ to their advantages. Whether it is colour or an arrangement of words they speak to the subconscious to prime us to achieve their end goal. Ultimately for people who consciously use those techniques it is about driving our behaviour so they can reap financial rewards.
Sadly too many see pound signs in what we do (little do they know) and think they can maximise financially by applying the latest trend in consumer psychology/ subconscious marketing to their ‘campaigns for conversion’. Some is really blatant and some less obvious (but if you know even a little bit about how it works the ‘less obvious’ will probably be obvious too).
Everyone knows that the words ‘No/Not’ are a fundamental expression of denial. The brain / imagination does all sorts of summersaults to interpret what follows those words but when these words are used there is immediately a neural bias for the negative and the brain responds rapidly as if there is a threat. Unfortunately, brain barely has any response to positive words like ‘Yes’ and so to overcome this negative bias we CONSCIOUSLY and REPEATEDLY have to generate as many positive thoughts as we can. I have read at LEAST THREE to five positive thoughts and feelings need to be generated to counter each expression of negativity.
The following paragraph extracted from psychology today, article by Newburg & Waldman 2012 called ‘words can change your brain’: ‘the most dangerous word in the world’ (they are referring to the word ‘No’). “POSITIVE WORDS and thoughts propel the motivational centers of the brain into action and help us build resilience when we are faced with problems… According to Sonja Lyubomirsky, a leading happiness researcher, if you want to develop lifelong satisfaction, you should regularly engage in positive thinking about yourself, share your happiest events with others and savor every positive experience. Our advice: Choose your words wisely and speak them slowly. This will allow you to interrupt the brain’s propensity to be negative, and, as recent research has shown, the mere repetition of positive words like love, peace, and compassion will turn on specific genes that lower your physical and emotional stress. You’ll feel better, live longer, and build deeper and more trusting relationships with others, at home and at work.”
If ever there was a case for positive affirmations and giving yourself a good positive feed and putting yourself in a space that is ‘all about the positive’ regularly this might be it. Especially in the current world climate. I think need to pull my socks up in some areas of my life on this front starting NOW. HOWEVER, we never have any trouble coming up with POSITIVES about what we DO at our Bikram Yoga School. HAPPILY easy peasy on that front. Maybe this will resonate with one/some of you too. Anyway, I hope it helps.
Om Om Om Yes Yes Yes Be Be Be Bikram Bikram Bikram Love Love Love