Are You On-Top-Of-The-World or Down In the Dumps?

After studying (not just reading) “Motor Action and Emotional Memory”, either
the scientists at Radbourd University, Netherlands have made a monster discovery
or they need a minimum of one year of therapy to recover their healthy minds.

This Dutch research stands for the principle – “Bodily Motion - Triggers Emotional Memories”. Upward Motor Movements retrieve Positive (happy) long-term memories. Downward motor activates retrieve Negative (distasteful) long-term memories.

Both Up and Down physical activity affect human behavior, action and success.

Real Life Examples

1. In sports – we see winning athletes pumping their Right arm
upward in a victory salute. They nonconsciously maintain that
pumping arm mental-movie BEFORE they win as a roadmap of their future goal. Maybe it is their visual pathway to finding the Wizard.
2. The Head Referee in football raises both his arms parallel (railroad tracks) to declare a score. Watch field judges and other officials – arms Upward indicate a winning effort.
3. Thumbs UP! from a clenched fist means Yes! History: Medieval
custom to seal a deal in business; also used by U.S. pilots in WWII
to signal – ready to ascend to the skies. Bull-fighting?
4. Pointer: the computer symbol signifying Pay Attention! is a symbol called a FistNote. It appears as a closed fist with the Index finger extended Upward. History: < Heb – Yad meaning “hand”.
See: Point-And-Click symbol on your computer. Index finger pointing North and Upward.

Google: neuroscientist Daniel Casasanto the lead author, of this article appearing in the prestigious international journal – Cognition April 2010.


For Inquiring Minds Only:
You know the expression “in-a-nutshell” which permits us to hope and beg
the writer to be brief and condense the adjectives? The cliché comes from
an alleged copy of Homer’s Iliad, so tiny it could fit in the shell of a nut.

One-more-once: moving your limbs Upward triggers positive life experiences memories. Downward cues (prompts) negative memories. So? Up or Down movements set a mood and improves your success percentage in whatever you do.

Examples: interviews, tests and human relationships. Upward motion creates Mood.

Spatial Words

When we remember happy experiences we think in term of Spatial metaphors. My Mom used the figure-of-speech, “in-seventh-heaven”, kids used the “metaphor”, “I’m on – top-of-the-world.” Being depressed (blue), we used the spatial metaphor expression - “beneath a bedbug’s belly.” Brainiacs used the “figure-of-speech” – the ”9th Circle of Hell”.

For Inquiring Minds: Dante (Italian poet) wrote The Devine Comedy around 1308
about sin and Hell. The worse neighborhood downtown was the 9th Circle of Hell – a celestial sentence for one’s malicious sins. The under (after) world was divided in three sections: Inferno-Purgatory-Paradiso. Some Chinese writers claimed there were 18 separate condominiums in Hell.

Vertical Space And Emotion

Experiment: moving both hands upward participants are asked, “tell me about
a time you felt proud of yourself”. Positive stories were double (2x) the amount of Negative memories when moving both hands simultaneously.

Conclusion: memory retrieval was most efficient when the physical motion upward MATCHES the positive memory recalled. Moving upward (Vertical Direction) prompts a Positive memory like - Acing a test or winning an award.

When we are physically moving in a Downward motion, we trigger a Negative emotional memory of Failing an important exam or NOT getting picked for the team.
Simple motor actions Upward appear to access (trigger) happy positive emotions.
Moving your limbs downward trigger long-term memories of loss and failure, got it?

So What, Huh?

There is practical knowledge you can use before going for an important Interview,
taking an Entrance Exam, or prior to giving a presentation to a Board of Directors

Secret: Don’t try to change folks mind – change their Mood! A win-win prospective
creates a positive emotional attitude for both sides leading to mutual success.

Fact: If you want to encode long-term memories for ease of access, look upward toward your left upper quadrant. To retrieve long-term memories, look upward toward your right upper quadrant. It works; try this proven strategy.
The secret is creating vivid emotional mental-imagery of your goal – upward.
Google: Milton H. Erickson, MD and Neural Linguistic Programming.

Longevity Without Dementia

Did you know up to 50% of Senior Citizens over 80 years of age, are affected by Alzheimer’s or some form of dementia. Don’t laugh; you are going to live to ninety-five, so I am talking about your longevity not some abstract stranger.

Direct quote from Archives of General Psychiatry, March 2010 issue, lead author
Dr. Aron Buchman, Rush University Medical Center.

“People who say their lives have a Purpose (feeling good about themselves) significantly reduce their risk of Alzheimer’s up to 50% and other forms of dementia up to 60%.” They stay disease-free and without disability way above average.

Research: 951 Seniors without dementia and followed up over the next four years. Folks who responded most positively about their lives having meaning and purpose did not kick-the-bucket as quickly as the negative minded. Those who seemed to like it here did not want to give up their seat, stayed longer and healthier at the fair.

Biological Reason

Maybe, just maybe, positive folks do not access their Sympathetic Nervous System
(Autonomic Nervous System) and their “Fight-Or-Flight” response. They’re not at war with themselves and their environment.

So what? Fact: Fight-or-Flight triggers two serious hormones: Cortisol – the stress hormone, and Epinephrine (adrenaline) the neurotransmitter for activating bodily defense mechanisms for survival.

The obverse (other) side of the Sympathetic is our Parasympathetic Nervous system
which releases Acetylcholine – the relaxation neurotransmitter. Get this: positive,
purposeful folks make a habit of being on the side of their Parasympathetic Nervous
System. They trigger both relaxation and digestion – not their survival mode.

They are not into chronic stress leading them to Heart Disease, Cancer and Stroke.

Get this: more social and physical activity, plus higher cognitive use of your mind are linked to longevity and better health. Having a higher purpose in life, being of
service to others, reinforces your desire to live longer and happier.

The result – is not easy to believe – lower mortality, less frequent disease, and reduced mental and physical disabilities. Now get with the program – smile and laugh easily and often and “thumbs-up” in your daily life experiences.

Endwords: would you like a competitive advantage in your career? The skill of reading and remembering three (3) books, articles and reports in the time your peers can hardly finish one? Remember, we live in the Knowledge Economy.

Contact us for a free speed reading report on how to double your knowledge skills in just ten-days. It is important – move on this now.

See ya,

copyright © 2010 H. Bernard Wechsler

Author's Bio: 

Author of Speed Reading For Professionals, published by Barron's.
Business partner of Evelyn Wood, creator of speed reading,
graduating 2 million, including the White House staffs of four
U.S. Presidents: Kennedy-Johnson-Nixon-Carter