054. How to take a positive experience and make it better 

 February 11, 2019

Video Transcript

Our brains are wired to make negative experiences more powerful and memorable than positive experiences. That's awesome from evolutionary terms, but not really so great for our enjoyment. However, luckily for you, there is a technique called savoring that, specifically and deliberately applied, can help you take positive experiences and make them deeper, richer, and more lasting.

So savoring uses four elements. There's luxuriating, which is sensory pleasure. There's basking, which is pride. There's marveling, which is awe, and there's gratitude--thanksgiving, which is gratitude.

In a recent coaching conversation, I was talking to a dog trainer about a about her her most recent appointment with a client that had gone very well. She was really happy with it. The client was a six-month-old labrador mix, and he was really just starting to catch on. And so we were using these elements of savoring to help her build upon this experience and have it be something that she could use moving forward.

So we started with sensory and I asked her what felt great in that experience, just in the in the actual physical experience of it. And she said, "Well, I mean, what is better than looking at a puppy and touching a puppy? Just from a sensory level, petting a puppy and watching a puppy, there's so much joy there."

I said, "Super. Okay, so let's talk about marveling. What was awe? Where were your moments where you just were sort of sparked?"

And she said she had awe when she could see the little light bulb go on for this puppy, that it just warmed her from the inside. She was amazed at how well timing of rewards can help a brain learn.

She said it's just a fascinating concept that she, as someone outside the family, can come in and make a few connections between people and their dog that that creates their communication. And she said she just loves that. So it created this sense of awe for her.

And I said, "Okay. Well, let's talk about thanksgiving." And she said, "Well I'm so grateful to have this awesome client and I have so many great clients that I really appreciate them. But honestly, sometimes I forget. Because the ones who drain my energy don't always feed me the same way."

I said, "Yes, but let's talk about this client. What about this client makes you so happy?" And she said, "Well, I'm really grateful that they love their dog."

And I said, "Yeah, isn't that what we want? And we don't want all people to really love their pets the way we really think pets should be loved?" And that such a wonderful feeling when we see that, and we're so happy for the animal and we're happy for the people. We're happy for the world. It just works out great.

And so then we went with that final element of basking, which is pride, and sometimes that one's a little bit tough for people because we sometimes hold back a little and think maybe it's wrong or egotistical to show a little bit of pride. But because I led her through these steps already there were multiple moments of pride that I could point out to her even when she was a little uncomfortable.

She made great connections with her clients, both human and canine. She made a difference. And she was really happy and engaged and lit up. And those are the result of her work, and her effort, and her years of training and experience. She had a lot to be proud of there.

So I encourage you to think about these elements: luxuriating, which is pleasure; thanksgiving, which is gratitude; marveling, which is a sense of awe; and basking, the sense of pride.

Find where you can think about those elements in your at work and see if that doesn't enhance your experience. Until next time. Have a great day.

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