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The "Association and Dissociation" Technique and "The fear of Public Speaking"

The "Association and Dissociation" Technique


  1. Neutralize Experiences of low to medium intensity.
  2. amplify the positive feeling or some positive experience that you had in the past.

This exercise is not recommended for traumatic experiences

Note : To understand this technique, we will perform an exercise. You don’t need any equipment to perform this exercise but it is expected of you to sit in a quiet place with minimal disturbances so that you can focus on this exercise.

Running Exercise

Sit straight with your spine and shoulders erect. Close your eyes.

Now imagine that you are seeing yourself running from a distance. i.e you are observing yourself running from far away. Well, you can imagine seeing yourself running on the road while you are sitting on a park bench.

How do you feel about it?

Most of you will probably feel nothing.

Now merge yourself with the object i.e imagine yourself running and observing through the eyes of a runner. You would have a completely different experience now. Can you imagine your heart pumping and your lungs expanding? Can you imagine your sweat dripping and stinging in your eyes? You could also imagine yourself being sore in your calves and thighs. Can you imagine that constant nudging in your heart that you feel when it is trying to make you stop will your mind is focused on completing your run?

How do you feel about it now? Was your experience any different than the previous one? Now open your eyes.

If your answer was yes then what do you think was the difference b/w the first case and the last case?

Well in the first case you were not connected to the object i.e you were dissociated from it and in the second case you imagined yourself being connected with it hence the state of association. In other words, Dissociation is disconnecting or separating from certain experiences and Association  is connecting with desirable experiences.

Now you might be wondering, How can this association and dissociation help me neutralize or amplify my experiences. You can amplify or neutralize any feeling by being associated or dissociated with it.


The Fear of Public Speaking

Let's take the fear of public speaking as an example. You know that this fear is very real. Even if you have worked very hard for this, the fear won't let you perform it brilliantly. Well, some amount of fear is good since it keeps you on your toes and alert but it is the excess of the fear of public speaking that hinders our performance. So let's see how we can dissociate it and make it less dominant. You must understand that fear will be there and it is good but its intensity will be reduced many folds.

Imagine "The fear of Public Speaking" as a cartoon character or a funny object that you would like to dissociate from.

The Working Idea to overcome the "Stage Fear"

The main idea here is to imagine it as an object so that we can dissociate from it. Imagine its image as big as possible right in front of your eyes, now you already know that you are associated with it. Now what you have to do is try to push the fear away from you slowly. Making it distant and smaller, don't stop till the time the fear is at a safe distance from you. Now you will realize that the fear levels have dropped significantly and your heartbeat which was earlier elevated is coming back to normal. I encourage you to try this next time you go for public speaking.

An alternative way to dissociate from this fear is to imagine it happening to someone else.When people who had gotten over their phobias were studied, it was discovered that every one of these people now thought of their phobia experience as it they were watching it happen to someone else(similar to the "Running exercise" when you were seeing yourself running while you were sitting on the park bench).

If you are new to this sort of content, I would like to tell you that it is good to be skeptical and not believing right away. Skepticism is the foundation for trust and some amazing discoveries but negating something without actually trying it is not skepticism, it is rather being naive. And being naive gets you nowhere. I would recommend the readers to be skeptic and not believe in what I say right away but try it for yourself 2-3 times with full dedication to see if these tricks work for you or not. But I would also recommend for you to not be naive and jump to conclusions without trying it so that people who are actually in need of these exercises don't get demotivated by your hatred.

If you found the content insightful, subscribe for more content like this. I ll meet you next week with a new blog. Peace!!


  1. Awesome
    Got something new today

  2. Nice article. Must try the tricks. Might work on few.

  3. Smells good, I will definitely try this

  4. There's a quote, courage is not the absence of fear, but the knowledge that there's something more important worth doing. That's helped me when I'm onstage, I intend on giving your advice a try as well.

    1. That is a very powerful quote! Thanks for sharing it!


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