A Pleasing Setting for Easy AnchoringAnd here's the good part: Once a firm mental association is made with the anchoring object, it can have its positive effect without you even having to consciously think about it. In other words, the anchor becomes unconsciously reinforcing simply out of habit. Since bad habits work this way, it makes sense that good ones do, too.
One reason it's to your advantage to have a relatively clean, organized and pleasing office setting for your trading is related to the use of triggers and anchors. Since you can use various objects in your setting to trigger and anchor positive shifts of thought and associated feeling, it's a good idea to have objects set in place so that every time you look there, your eyes will find the same object, not having to search around for it. I use objects such as statues, pictures, trophies, books and memorabilia from childhood for triggering and anchoring shifts of thought and emotion. The more orderly and consistent triggers and anchoring objects in the office, the more automatic and unconscious these mental connections become. Mental associations are being made all the time with events and associated objects or movements of the body. All we're trying to do is more consciously use these associations to our own benefit. Once set in place, they can operate largely on their own.
Jim Furyk , who finished the year as the 14th leading money winner on the PGA tour, decides on a club, pulls it out of his bag and then stands behind the ball to line up the shot. He visualizes the path he wants the ball to fly on. Then, just before stepping toward the ball, he hitches up his pants. Now, hitching up his pants, which appears to the outsider as just a nervous habit, is something more. It's a trigger behavior that launches the approach to the ball, and it may have a positive thought associated, such as, "Just put a nice, smooth swing on it." He then anchors his golf swing after the shot by holding his position on the follow-through of the swing. That builds in a mental/neurological connection between a good swing and a well-executed shot. Holding the position also allows for this connection to be remembered in the body. This is referred to as "muscle memory" and is something that all competitive athletes may work with to enhance performance. (For those readers who play golf and who would like to read more about the psychology of the game, please see the articles on my Web site .)