Ask Dr. Tracy

"Anchoring" Romantic Feelings


"Anchoring" is a proven and powerful, yet little-known discovery of modern psychology. By setting up a link between good feelings your loved one is experiencing and a special touch you give him or her at that time, you'll eventually be able reactivate those good feelings whenever you need to simply by invoking that same touch.

You may remember reading about Pavlov's famous experiments, where he rang a bell every time he fed his dogs, and the bell become so associated with food that the dogs would salivate when he rang the bell, even in the absence of food. Well, anchoring sounds a little Pavlovian, I'll admit, but it's all in a good cause -- to make your love feel better.

The general idea is this: in our culture, certain gestures and touches already have special meaning (a touch on the upper arm for comfort in bereavement, a hug for a warm greeting, a pat on the rear for touchdown congratulations); with anchoring, you go one step further, and create a special, private touch which has a particular meaning for you and the one you love.

Pick a spot other than the upper arm, since that's already taken. For your general-purpose, "Good Feelings" Anchor, you want a spot you can reach without embarrassment in any situation, yet one that isn't touched much -- like the back of the neck. Plan on rubbing that spot gently, in tune with his or her breathing.

Your objective is to connect that special touch with whatever makes your loved one happy: a wonderful meal, opening a present, watching their team win a big game, getting good news from work, listening to a favorite piece of music, or watching a beautiful sunset. Your special touch should be combined with vocal and visual anchors as well. Say a pet name in a special tone of voice at the same time you touch or rub the special spot you've picked, and be sure you have a warm and loving expression on your face.

This must be done repetitively in order to establish the unconscious connection between their good feelings and your touch, but once the Anchor is set, you can use it anytime to bring back those good feelings when they start to slip.

Let's say you're both about to go out to dinner with your boss, but your mate's had a rotten day. Nothing you did, but you know it could ruin an important evening if you don't do something fast to improve his or her disposition.

The worst thing you can do is to tell your mate everything's fine. Remember from my "Mirroring" article, when your loved one is feeling bad, the best thing to do is mirror their bad mood and get in tune with it first. If your mate is visual (see "Inner Languages"), you might say, "I can see why you're upset." Or, if he or she is auditory, "I can hear how upset you are." Or, to your feelings mate, "I can understand how you feel."

Then, when you've gotten in tune with your love's miserable mood, your magic anchor will help you turn their misery to happiness. At that point say, "I feel so bad for you. It's a shame you don't feel better, honey (or use the pet name that's part of the anchor)..." (now touch the anchor) "...because it's going to be a great dinner and a wonderful evening, and remember, living well is the best revenge."

You'll be amazed at how well this works.

If you've ever felt out of control in a relationship, anchoring can make you feel more in control, even sexually. Since it's possible to have different anchors for different feelings, you can create a different anchor to make your mate feel sexy.

Actually, sex anchors are about the most powerful anchors, since you build them by using a special touch every time your mate experiences a strong orgasm. One of my male clients created one so effective that it would bring his partner to climax without him touching her in any other way.


Related Keywords: Love Strategies, Making Love Grow, Keeping Love Alive



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