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Episode 056 – Breaking a negative response pattern, what we can learn from F1 race driver Sergio Perez about re-framing your bad situation, feelings to look out for and more

When a set of negative circumstances impacts your life, how do you respond? Feelings of anger, frustration and sadness can creep in. What if you begin to react (or know someone who does) like this to every little circumstance.

Now more than ever it will become noticeable. As a collective, we’ve had our worlds flipped and most people feel as they’ve been out at sea for year. But instead of calm waters, we’ve experienced constant crashing waves.

How have you responded? Whether it’s negatively or positively – we need to become aware of this reaction before it becomes an engrained response pattern. 

Hopefully, this episode shines a light on any patterns you are holding on to and break them for good.

In this episode Dr Ro and Harminder talk through:

  • Negatively geared response patterns
  • Feelings and emotions to look out for in yourself
  • Feelings and emotions to look out for in others
  • How high Formula One race drivers break their pattern to overcome high pressure situations
  • How you can break your own response pattern for good
  • And much more

For a quick snapshot of breaking your negatively geared behaviour pattern follow these steps:

First – Write down is see it as it is. Not worse than it is. Remove emotion from this process and get descriptive.

Second- Now, ask yourself – How do I choose to react to this?

Third – It’s time to paint a new picture (create a new frame). How would you re-write your current situation? If you put a different spin on the circumstance, how would you see the situation differently?

Fourth – Break your patter! To break out of negatively geared emotional stage – change your physical state. You can do this – physically eg. Walk/Jump/Run. Or change your environment eg. leave the office. Or play music that gets you pumped. In shoe – something that will make you feel the opposite of what you are feeling now!

That’s a snapshot! For a more detailed walkthrough, listen to episode 056.

Full transcribe below…

Harms: Hello it’s Harms here and welcome to another episode of the Seekardo show. 

Let me set the scene for you. 

It’s fair to say that over the last 12 months maybe a bit longer and for some of you may be for a very long time you’ve had a feeling of being knocked around. You’ve had a feeling of your world has been rocked, imagine being on a ship, the ship’s rocky, the waters are rocky, the waves are choppy. 

That’s what the last 12 months has been like I’ve said for some people it may have been longer. What that creates in many of us, is this feeling of emotional vulnerability, but how that actually shows up is in the form of emotions in the form of feelings, but what’s important and what defines our day, our week, our year, next five years and next 10 years is how we respond to those choppy waters to the rocky environment, to being knocked around. 

If you imagine yourself with your back to the wall if you’re a boxer against the ropes how do you respond and how do you fight back?

How do you regain the way in which you respond? 

That’s what we’re talking about today. 

So Ro over to you to talk about what exactly will be honing in on today.

Dr Ro: Yeah, this is great hi everybody and welcome back to another one of the Seekardo show podcasts thank you for joining us we’re always eternally grateful to have our listeners. 

I think this is a subject we both felt was important because as you just mentioned being thrown around by the storm there are so many people that right now feel like their life is an effect of what’s happened to them. 

Today really is about how you respond to the circumstances around you, but will start maybe by talking about how you have been responding and that comes down to emotional reaction. We’ve gone through Covid as we’re recording this a lot of people have been furloughed other people lost jobs, members of their family, other people’s relationships have broken up, people feel like the goals they set a year two years ago have been knocked out the park moved aside and their aspirations just crushed and any number of things as well. 

My personal observation is that I think people are starting to move into an emotional place and I say people, a large percent of the population feel like they are a victim of what’s happened and to some extent powerless, so I’d like us to talk into that space, but maybe bring a few analogies in and talk about some ways to tackle that.

Harms: I agree and I think sometimes you may not even be aware that it’s happening.

As part of all of our podcasts at the Seekardo show I like to think it’s bringing awareness to new ways to just be emotionally developed. We’ve had guests on, sometimes when the guests are talking about a subject one comes to mind the wonderful lady who spoke about helping teenagers go through, especially females go through a course, a rite of passage. I was not aware that it existed.

Dr Ro: The message I want to get across and you may not have resonated with the initial message you may as we go through this it’s all about awareness.

It works at every level: sport, professional, business, relationships. 

This conversation about how as human beings we react to that which happens to us starts at the year when we’re born and it carries on to whatever age. I think as people get older their model of the world changes and so their perception of the situation is very different. 

If I were to sit with the 25 year old me 30 years ago I know if I was put in front of a set circumstances I know how I would’ve reacted back then to now, so there’s wisdom here as well with years and also be good for you to come from the point of view of this youthful energy. 

How different people and circumstances react. 

I think a good place to start would be to look at how we show up

So how we react to circumstances and to try and help define that somebody can be thrown into a situation and whilst one person reacts in a very happy way another person can get depressed. 

Harms: Somebody else might get angry, somebody else might get joyful, somebody else might feel frustrated, somebody else just thinks so what that is how it is. I think we need to talk about initially those negatively geared energy, those frustration pushback energies and what they are.

The reality is we’ve all had like you said a negatively geared media outlet for a long time, but even more so in the last 12 months concentrated around a specific topic as you said, we’re recording this when Covid is around, but if it’s not Covid it something else. 

It’s an election if it’s not an election it’s a scandal, something to do with the Royal family.


Dr Ro: Ironically this year we’ve had all of that. 

I think it’s always going on, you’re right. Everyone needs to appreciate that it is a pattern of behaviour. So when something happens and we react to it we are reacting in a pattern. For some people that pattern is the same all the time. 

We know people that go. You can imagine how they will react even if that sentence says a lot about how that person shows up in the world. If you’re either frustrated or angry or feel hopeless, bear in mind that you have developed that pattern. 

I have a certain set of reactions that I have to certain set circumstances, as do you, as you get older, maybe more emotionally developed you learn to be aware of that and by putting a spotlight on it gives us a chance to ask questions of ourselves and say do I need to react differently. 

We were talking about Formula  One I think it would be great to go into that space today as when I look at a guy under 20 years of age in the early 20s driving a car that goes 200 miles in an hour and the lack of performance how they react in the back of that you compare that to a 30 year old that has been racing for 10 years and their behaviour in response to that one race would be very different. 

I’ve been training a speaker just recently. I explained to him that when you start this as a speaker you put yourself in the front line. 

That means criticism, people not liking you. Sometimes we run events where we offer people the chance to go into further education and offering those things you’re seen to be a salesperson or somebody doesn’t like your style of delivery and he’s 30 years of age and the conversation was about three months ago I said you’re going to have to develop a thick skin and he said that won’t be a problem. 

A week ago he said I’m laughing because I realised how quickly I reacted to people’s comments, messages coming up on zoom call took it personally, didn’t sleep properly, processed a lot and so that 30 year old first time speaking conversation would be very different if I met him in 10, 15 years’ time. So we can change our patterns. 

I think that’s the main message I want to share here.

Harms:  A question off the back of that one my questions would be, can you change the pattern and the second is if you don’t change the pattern can you reinforce it to the point where it becomes extremely difficult to change?

Like you said, that person who always reacts in the way that we know how they’re going to react. A classic example is when kids are having a discussion shall we tell mum and dad? No, let’s tell mum because we know dad is going to react in that certain way. Has that become reinforced over years and years and years? 

In theory as we get older, we hope that we get wiser.

Dr Ro: Some people aren’t even consciously aware that it’s a form of behaviour. 

So from the basis that every human being has an identity which is formed at a young age, but then becomes reinforced the same way the rings on a tree get thicker and thicker and thicker the bark becomes thicker and thicker. 

After a while that tree is immovable, but if we go back to a certain point, we could have really bent it, we could have straightened it out, there is a point where a bent tree at the wrong angle after so many years you just can’t physically change it. That is to some extent true of a human being if they don’t want to be changed.

The first point of contact is awareness. The first step to a transformation is awareness. The answer is yes.

Harms: If the way I respond may be in anger, frustration, fear of hopelessness is that the way I react and respond always?

Dr Ro: That’s the problem, we just don’t see the impact that has on other people. Even on a personal level I had a conversation with my daughter and my fiancé this week. I reacted to something and they both looked at me and my 12 year old said, you said it this way. 

 hadn’t really thought about it like that and it’s because it’s so wired into our system that when we do something that we are so familiar with , that’s how it is. If you are over 25, 30 you’ve got thick patterns. 40 and above you may be doing things right now, reacting in a certain way and just feeling that’s how it is and that’s my life. 

That’s bullshit. 

Everything can change, quickly as well.

Harms: If we don’t reform these patterns and change the way the tree is growing, if we don’t identify this is happening in us, especially as you said when you get 25, 30, 40 it only gets stronger the pattern only gets thicker, it’s turned into a rock. 

Dr Ro: That will depend to some extent on what emotional reaction is.

If you broaden that the consequences could be a fixed relationship, intimate one or your relationship with your kids. Worst still your kids become a model of your behaviour. Which is probably the most common thing probably. 

People are like you’re just like your parents. 

It’s about empowering reactions and as much as we all want to have that it is human nature sometimes to revert to feeling frustrated and angry, pissed off, victim whatever, and that’s a safe place to go that may not be the most life changing place to go but it’s certainly a safe place for people but what if your kids follow that? 

So consequences on our children. What does it do to customers? What if your business is struggling, not because you haven’t got a good business model, but the way you conduct yourself or how you react to circumstances and your customers? 

Or your employees, what if you’ve got a higher transition rate of employees in your company and you’re wondering why? 

What if the aspirations and goals and dreams you set, you could have achieved them but somehow you triggered yourself in a way that the circumstances made you say, we can’t do that. 

You never made the choices or made the step, this decision-making to move you forward because circumstances around you, you literally felt forced into another door. It can affect every single area of our lives and the worst thing is to get to my age and go, I regret this. It’s so easy to coast off the back of Covid and go let’s see what happens. 

I think that’s the thing I worry about people using that phrase, let’s see what happens. That’s actually somebody giving the power over to somebody else. 

That’s kind of an apathetic emotional reaction to circumstances. It’s like mañana, let’s wait and see what happens.

Harms: Were both business owners you mentioned business if we look at in the business context how many businesses responded? When I say businesses it’s the leadership, the people in the businesses, how many of them responded over the last 12 months and said this is the end, it’s time to give up? 

I say this and I appreciate this is a weird time just look at this at the higher-level context. But then how many pivoted? 

How many business owners said this is an opportunity versus this is a block? That’s the way they responded to this by saying this is an opportunity they reframed that external circumstance which was out of their control and reframed it into the point of this is a new door that opened.

Dr Ro: We’ve talked about consequences. 

So let’s pick out your classics and if none of these resonate, think about the reaction or emotional feeling you have to something that happens to you. 

Let’s play the classic one, anger. 

I’m angry with the school because they wouldn’t let my child in. I am angry with the government because they’ve locked us down and I can’t get out. I’m angry because I lost my job, I’m angry with my wife because she doesn’t listen to me, I’m angry with my husband because he was unfaithful to me. 

I’m angry with my kids because they don’t listen to me. In what might be a normal circumstance for you and I someone else gets completely pissed off and angry their face goes into a state of frustration. We see this if I stand in front of an audience and I talk about a subject. 

How many times have you seen somebody literally get frustrated and lose their top whilst someone is saying I love this, this is so true. 

Thanks for the insight.

Harms: The other person turning red. I’ve physically seen people shake in the audience. I’ve seen people stop, close off, look out the window, verbal explosions.

Dr Ro: Every single human being reacts to a set of circumstances based on the frame that operates in that model of the world in NLP terms it’s referred to as their model of the world, which means under these circumstances when I see this situation it’s like a computer program. I do this, I feel that, I sense that, my physiology does this and I verbalise this syntax is another word they use. 

Other people do it in a different sequence and it becomes a pattern on a macro level or a big level, often a person is angry and can be angry if they go to a toilet and they’re bursting to go to the toilet and all the cubicles are full. 

Whereas someone might say oh no I need to go to the toilet someone else might get really pissed off. That same person that gets peed off in the toilet because the cubicles are full would equally get angry if they go to the bank account and they’re not making as much interest as they expected or something happens in the company where they don’t get a pay rise they want. 

Every set of circumstances they experience they react exactly the same way and I think it’s the same for most of these emotions we are going to talk about. But anger because it’s a lighter fuel ignition one it’s very much a quick want to spot, more so than frustration actually.

Harms: If I were standing in the bathroom with yourself in the public toilets, I would physically see you getting mad.

Dr Ro: It’s not anxiety, which is different. It is actually physical and the question I’ve got is what are you angry at? Are you angry at the toilet cubicle? Are you angry at the people who own the toilets? Run the toilets? Are you angry that it has to be at that moment in time in history there’s an infinite number of possibilities that it could have happened if it happened at that moment there are other people in the toilet? 

It can be any number of things and yet that person is angry, at what? It is nearly always actually an internal issue.

Harms: The way in which they’ve responded as part of that pattern as you just described. 

What we’re saying is that pattern can be applied to something which is not so evident, like frustration, feeling of hopelessness, if somebody criticises you go inwards and you go quiet. People go silent on themselves. 

When a certain topic comes up they just blank out and they become blind. Shut down.

Dr Ro: Things like anger, one of the most common places you see is driving how people react to a driver in front of them, a driver behind them, someone pulls out in a roundabout, overtakes et cetera and you get road rage. 

This is an awareness part of this podcast.

Frustration is a different one altogether. 

Did you get frustrated because you’re standing in a queue and you weren’t angry? As such anger is almost like a higher frequency than frustration but sat underneath the surface of that underneath anger is frustration and that’s a brewing feeling of like I want to move beyond this. 

It’s not quite anger, it’s like a more contained reaction. Somebody might argue I’m a bit more emotionally developed. I never get angry but you’re constantly frustrated and that’s an interesting distinction. It’s rarely talked about. 

But if you think about it, an angry person is like a pressure cooker letting off, a frustrated person could probably harbour more illness in their body because they never quite let it out. The lid is on and it’s trapped up that bubbling underneath so there could be a frustration with your partner but you don’t say anything about it so it goes on for years. 

Or your kids you’re frustrated because they don’t listen to you, instead of letting out and having a conversation even if it starts off angry the frustration builds up and bubbles up. In the career you’re not getting the pay rise, not respected, so that frustration at some point has to go somewhere. 

Anger needs to go somewhere to turn it into something more powerful. frustration needs to go somewhere. 

I think frustration is at the moment a huge one globally. Because we are in this simmering pot last year the frustration was two, three. When Covid hit it was frustrating when you get to eight, nine, ten now you’re into an anger zone.

Harms: What’s interesting about frustration is that it simmers, but what happens is you start to react in the way of frustration to anything and everything. 

Whereas anger there are certain things you explode whereas frustration it could be literally anything. The drive home would make you annoyed, the traffic would make you annoyed, the fact that your partner parked in your parking space would make you annoyed.

Dr Ro: It’s a compounded emotion of anger, but anger is like a fire that spreads. You put more and more on it and there’s a point where and if it’s at an eight where it can switch to anger. You don’t get to 10 on frustration because you’re at the point of anger. 

With frustration it’s very difficult to know what the source was. Just like anger, what am I angry about? Where did this start?

From a coach’s perspective in these years it is actually never about anything that’s around you, it’s always about something that internally you’re frustrated with. 

Maybe you were unsuccessful in a career that you went into, maybe the relationship didn’t work and you’re frustrated internally about the fact that you couldn’t quite get it right. Maybe you didn’t make as much money as friends or you’re frustrated because you never quite got to that success level you wanted and so what happens is, all roads lead to one generalised frustration in life and so it’s just channelled there.

Harms: That is frustration, that’s something which is less visible than anger, but it shows up in a different prolonged way.

Dr Ro: If we switched to one of those invisible ones probably the most important one is powerlessness or another word for it might be victim, notice the difference in how that feels. 

If I say you’re a victim and you say no I’m not, if I say do you feel powerless? And you say yeah powerless, well that’s the same thing. Because what both those people are saying is this is not my fault, I’m not in control of this, this happened to me.

I am powerless, a victim might say it in a slightly different way but it’s the same emotion. 

This quiet feeling of powerlessness comes through constant conversations about how I’ve not been able to make any changes in my life because my boss said this, my wife said this, my husband said this it’s because of the kids, financially I’m in a difficult place because of this, they don’t pay enough money. 

It’s always about them and the easiest way to spot it is when people talk about how external things are affected where they are now, meaning I’m just this boat on the ocean. Why are you in this position on the ocean? 

Nothing to do with me. I was just blown here by the wind. But you’ve got a rudder there, sails so you have been steering it? 


I got hit by a wave and got knocked sideways and I couldn’t control the rudder and then this happened so they default to powerlessness or victim. I like the word victim because I’ll use it if I want to piss somebody off to get them to break their state. 

If you get them to react angry, anger actually oddly enough there’s a thing called the scale of consciousness and there is a great book called power versus force, and this is by Dr David Hawkins. Anger actually vibrationally has a higher sense of vibrational frequency than powerlessness because at least you’re having to channel a feeling of anger to somebody else. 

By getting somebody pissed off it moves them away from the victim to now being angry. Very hard like a river just meandering really slowly in a valley. It’s really hard to direct that but if you take them up the side of the mountain get them cutting enough speed that’s anger. 

Whereas we’ve got to change that state of apathy which is another good word for victimisation. It’s like let me just do fuck all right now because actually I’m a victim I can’t do anything. You can. 

No, you don’t understand. I can’t. 

That will be like their flag; they just wave around all the time.

Harms: I would say the word that sits under hopelessness or victim would be that apathy that’s the truly invisible one where somebody just checks out.

Looping back to what you said there in that coaching scenario just for reference you mentioned previously about breaking the pattern, so when you have a conversation with somebody what you’ll be able to do is break the normal pattern. 

Which is getting closer to where we want you to start to understand.

Dr Ro: If you got back to the river it’s like channelling it, blocking something, but then suddenly narrowing down like in a river that’s really wide it moves slowly and it meanders if you suddenly block that river, in other words you break the pattern but you give that river another outlet like a mini dam everything picks up speed. 

It forces pace and all you’re doing with that is you break the pattern getting them to refocus. We’ve talked about anger and frustration at one end of the spectrum then the invisible emotional reaction you talked about, which is a great lead into victimisation or feeling powerlessness and there’s a whole bunch of other ones in between. 

Ask yourself the question if you gave it a label next time something happens to you, a news announcement, your wife or husband says something or you find yourself emotionally getting stirred up. It’s not particularly positive, give it a word, and it will fall into five or six keywords most people tend to feel.

Harms: Often if you’re feeling a certain way, they’re destructive. 

Everything we spoke about the anger, the frustration words that may play out, which are quite common in the way social media drives a certain emotional reaction. It creates jealousy, envy, a feeling of I would love to live that life.

Dr Ro: I think you just picked on a really important point. 

I think someone that’s younger has that fieriness. 

Whereas I know for me and I don’t have any sense of frustration and anger, it’s like I’ve seen this before, so my level of reaction is different to somebody who is 20 years younger than me. 

What do you think the feeling right now is amongst the younger generation with the world circumstance as they are? Is it all negative or positive? Is there a mixture? But what if there were reactionary words what would they be?

Harms: I think if we look at it from two sides of the coin there’s always the context of there is amazing phenomenal people out there who already understand this and have an awareness of this and they respond and react in the way that let’s turn whatever we are seeing right now into an opportunity, into a way that we can do good, do magic, create lights. 

But that doesn’t make a good news story and that doesn’t create a great social media environment because as we know most things are driven or most attention is captured by a negative feeling. 

The best example, a real-life example, is when you’re driving down the motorway, the rubbernecking scenario, an accident that causes hours and hours’ worth of delay on the motorway because people just want to see what’s happening there. Often people stop to see a negative scenario versus a positive situation happening. 

There is amazing positive stuff happening around us all the time, but the negative is what just sucks us in and the companies play on this. Companies in the social media companies that dictate what information is put out there.


Dr Ro: Soap operas have thrived on it for years, that last hanging two minutes of a soap is like something shocking or negative or whatever, and often they’re finished on shock and anger reaction somebody walks in and find his wife in a soap opera in bed with somebody else or somebody else gets told a certain person is dead or there has been a loss of a job and then you get that hanging emotional response and they thrive off that.

It’s addictive.

Harms: The best example if you live in the UK is EastEnders, Coronation Street and Emmerdale. Every person in that show’s story is built on suffering. 

The story is built on a negative chain of events. 

Now this is what’s fuelling most people who are flicking through the newsfeed and we know a large part of the younger generation are flicking through their newsfeed, which means words you mention what words are flying out I would say the biggest and the strongest is apathy. 

I feel people have become just numb to everything they’re seeing whether something crazy is happening in the outside world.

Dr Ro: Is it apathy and indifference or indifference or both?

Harms: Both are separate words.

Apathy is I don’t care, it’s not relevant to me. Let me put my next TV show on and get my next dopamine hit as such. Indifference or numbness is I’ve seen this so much this is just how the world is, which means you are living in those two spaces. 

Then there’s those that get annoyed, they get fired up and, but what they do with that anger is key. Some who go make a change. 

We’ve seen some incredible movements through this, the black lives matter movement and some amazing climate movements. What they do with the anger and that frustration and annoyance is a different way in which they respond versus I get angry and that turns into hate. 

A big thing that we’ve seen across the board is generally that people are turning these emotions that we’ve spoken into hate for other human beings.

Dr Ro: You’re right it is anger, hate combined together look at the US elections and the capital being stormed it’s unbelievable.

Harms: It is the way somebody’s responded and then escalated that feeling. I think that’s where we are at.


Dr Ro: That is interesting because you talked about indifference and apathy. 

So someone my age who watches the same set of circumstances you described there would probably react not in different but I would say compassionate is probably a good word meaning, they’d go I’ve been here before. 

They would have a different reaction. 

I think the older generation still maintains compassion as opposed to indifference, but they just may not react to it because they’ve seen it before. They may be compassionate, contribute money to charity, whatever my feeling is that my generation still maintains a level of connection with it, whereas I think you’re right because we are not literally constantly looking at this social media space we still can differentiate between highs and lows emotionally. 

Whereas you’re talking about this numbness, this whitewash, can’t differentiate emotionally now.

Harms: Fundamentally your generation have seen before the Internet age everything was real touch, feel if something happens locally crime it was a big deal. 

You would feel it, you would feel the family what they’re going through, what’s going on in the community whereas now we have access to everything. My age group will be the last to experience what you felt. 

Now we have a generation who only knows this.

Dr Ro: How do they know what they’re feeling is real or not because everything is bloody virtual, they’re not actually having the experience of it. 

They’re observing the experience of it through a media which is then distorted even further through a camera, which is then edited and certain factors are being taken out. It’s not even the actual experience of it which is bizarre.

Harms: It is all designed to evoke these emotions and entertain, try and keep us hooked.

Social media then looks at what we do, our behaviour and then starts to feed us that and its’ like putting fuel on the fire.

My big fascination with all of this is you feel an emotion and part of that emotion we go through this pattern and then we respond whether it’s negative or positive. 

But if somebody is flicking through their newsfeed they’ll see something which revokes anger, happiness, frustration, sadness and genuinely how can a human being feel all those things within the space of five seconds?

Dr Ro: This goes back to the storm you get hit by waves on the left side you look up boom it hits you on the back and you’re just tossed around. You said the word sadness, that’s one to add to our list. 

We’ve gone through anger, frustration, hopelessness, victimhood, but actually sitting somewhere just above that is sadness, where people are constantly sad. 

Sad by the news. 

It’s in their sentence structure all the time and there’s nothing wrong with being sad because it is an emotion which all of us feel at some point, but when it’s attached to virtually any experience that is quite different negative or if there’s a tsunami it’s tragic, and that’s an extreme example of where you could feel extremely saddened and also compassionate for the families. 

But equally somebody could say my neighbours lost a cat. It’s so sad. 

It’s sad but the cat might come back. They add that word into every sentence. 

That whole identity attached to that gives you a very low vibrational frequency; there’s nothing joyous about that experience. That is another example without people realising it, they go that’s so true I do say that. 

It’s getting the mirror out and saying what is the word I attach to the experience I have of the world? 

There are nearly always one or two common ones. 

Even in a positive situation I go yeah, but. We occasionally have those and there was a bit of a frustrated conversation between us but then we just passed over it and said we’re going to get on with life anyway. But other people will just go into a state of semi-depression.

Harms: It becomes so reinforcing but the pattern continues.

Dr Ro:  You talked about consequences. 

Formula One, we talk about sport a lot and we love to look at different performances. Formula One is one of those areas where it is such an extreme sport that if your mindset is even like 1% off, we’re talking split-seconds it completely can shift your performance to the point where we’ve seen deaths this year. 

We talked about this prior to the podcast and myself and Harms have got a similar passion towards just the performance of this.

Harms: I think I know where you’re going with this, to give the readers an idea we’re still focused on how people react.

Dr Ro: When I grew up Formula One racing drivers were normally mid to late 20s and above. If somebody sponsored a Formula One company there’s millions going into it, they would often influence who got in to drive the cars now we’re seeing people like 19, 20 years of age and they are kids. They’re still really young and yet they’re sitting in a car which is worth millions and there’s millions on the line as well as their life’s on the line and the whole world is looking at 20 drivers a year. 20 drivers driving a car that has the ability to go 200 miles an hour and one slight lack of concentration could be death, one extreme or the car is out of the race.

Loss of points, revenue.

I wrote some names down Pierre Gasly, Alex Alba and then Sergio Pérez. Pierre Gasly as a driver is incredibly young. He was one of the youngest to be brought into Red Bull. 

The only two racing brands that have won the world Championships in Formula One are Red Bull and Mercedes. This guy comes in and they’re expecting all these things from him and he did not perform last year at the level he should have done and it’s a case of every single race you have to start notching it up. 

They give them time; they’re coming from formula two into this beast of a car. It’s like a fine-tuned reaction to every situation. Think about the world, everything is slower, every circumstance you face you react to those circumstances in a certain way. 

We’re now talking about how you react in a split-second and how everything else going on in your psychology comes to a point channelled through two feet, two hands and two eyes. 

Eight points of contact and whilst they’re driving at 200 miles an hour they’re talking to an individual who is watching the other drivers and telling them you’re .6 seconds behind this person or ahead of this person. 

Even down to heart rate it’s believable. 

They can even monitor the performance of another driver who has got their foot on the brake so the response time and emotional reaction time to this is huge. 

You imagine someone carrying a little bit of sadness there or a little bit of frustration or a little bit of apathy, fear feeling a victim when you’re going 200 miles an hour you’re about to overtake somebody and your confidence is just like 1° off, the impact is massive and that’s what we saw with Pierre Gasly. 

Over the years he just didn’t quite perform and something shifted in him and he didn’t make it. They basically moved him off. Red Bull have a sister company called Alphatauri, this is like a lower budget Formula One car. 

It doesn’t have the same performance, power and what it means is that a car just will never be able to perform at the same speed on a straight run or bend. He goes off in the year and is replaced by Alex Alba. 

Similar age group goes straight into a Red Bull car and massive expectations of him.

The first couple of races he was right up there he challenged Lewis Hamilton and Hamilton basically on one particular race clipped him, moved across too quickly, got a five second penalty and that was it, he was out the races. 

Millions of pounds of the car gone. Another one Hamilton knocked him, and throughout the year, his confidence if you looked at his demeanour one word to me was he seemed powerless. He didn’t seem to grab it.

Harms: He got quieter and quieter.

Dr Ro: If I said describe his facial demeanour how would it be for you?

Harms: I would say throughout the series he stopped smiling.

Dr Ro: He looked like a little boy. 

He came in with this aspirational dream and he seemed to have a fire, but actually got into this power of my god, I can’t seem to do this and when he got into the car you actually can see race after race he’s getting less and less impowered. 

He’s got a performance coach and I was thinking why are they not sitting him down and giving him a bang, bang, bang, conversation. He needs the man up, find that power and break the pattern and shift. It is not about the driving he’s bringing all that baggage. 

The problem is the anger might be there but he is not showing it, frustration might be there so it’s kind of a hopeless apathy. It felt like that watching him. 

Not that he is apathetic as he’s a performer, driving a car at 200 miles an hour.

We’re not saying he’s not talented.

A lovely young man as well.

Harms: Exactly I think with all of those 20 drivers they are all of the best of the best. There’s very little between them in terms of driving talent they’re the best of the best, the car yes dictates where they finish on the track, but it’s their job to get the best our of the car. What’s the big variable? 

It’s how they react to all the situations and Alex Alba reacted in my opinion, poorly across the board. Was that always his pattern? 

I personally don’t believe so because he wouldn’t have got to where he was as his patterns changed negatively.


Dr Ro: I think it’s probably a pattern that shows up in another area of his life, could be relationships and intimacy, could be maybe a pattern that showed up in a certain part of his schooling.

I don’t know and this is actually what I personally think a coach or his performance should be doing is going back and finding out where this pattern has shown up. He’s got to smash that and then break the current pattern and redirect it to other energy. 

It led to the point where he was making mistakes he should never have made.

Harms: It wasn’t to do with his talent and skill it’s to do with how he was responding to all of it.

Dr Ro:In that moment at that speed yeah. In the same series as in the 2020 series you’ve got Sergio Pérez, who’s been racing for racing point which is the pink car and this guy has amazing performance, but for some reason racing point decided they’re going to let him go and they’re bringing another driver in.

Harms: He’s had a whole career in F1 and he’s not done. He has plenty of years left. Racing point said we’re just going to replace. I think it’s to do with sponsorship, all that kind of stuff as you mentioned, but it was his last race wasn’t it? 

It was like your F1 career was over.

Dr Ro: If there are only 20 spots in the line up for Formula One if there is any changing of drivers at the think about your life, if you’re in life and you make decisions think how often this emotion of regret kicks in if you wait, wait, wait, and then you make a decision in your 50s, 40’s when you know you should’ve made that decision 20 years ago, same thing with Formula One. 

What happens is if the drivers hear the news that they’re going to be dropped and there are only four races left, most other racing brands they’ve made the decision of who the other drivers are. 

Unless they’ve got a situation as we described with Red Bull where you’ve got Alex Alba and they are thinking maybe we don’t bring him back next year. 

So in their minds, they’ve got a gap opening up here, we’ve got Sergio Pérez he goes out he was in 19th position because the car span he got clipped on the first bend, the car went off hit gravel he managed to get off the gravel and the video footage before the race was he was like fuck it, it is my last race I’m going to do whatever I can to go out. 

I’ve got no one wanting to sponsor me back and this could be the end of my whole career.

Harms: Near the start of his last race in Formula One he spins and he ends up at the back of the pecking line.

Dr Ro:He said something like, I’ve got nothing to lose here. 

It was like a movie. 

This is the point you’ve got a young man, who is basically going into a hole emotionally. 

You’ve got Sergio Pérez who’s older and he’s got that American type vibe, I want to fight back, do something different and this goes back to the sort of solution we want to offer everyone and that is you sometimes have to turn your circumstances into the very reason why you want to make a change. 

He emotionally turned what could have been hopelessness, frustration and like fuck it I can’t get into another racing car team right now because it’s the end of the season to I’m going to smash this and go out and turn this total determination.

For the whole race he slowly worked his way up the whole track

Harms: He just went overtake, overtake, overtake. Where did he finish?

Dr Ro: First. 

In the last lap he just put his balls to the light and went for it. He overtook just before the end and took pole position and I don’t think there has ever been a race quite like that. It is about making decisions and changing your direction and having the courage to recognise, which is not what happened to Alex. 

He came into Red Bull last year from formula 2 was given an opportunity of a lifetime, he could’ve had a whole career in Formula One he has just been replaced by the very same person, Sergio Pérez, who thought the end of his career had happened, but because he shifted his emotional state because he shifted his focus, because he turned that hopelessness into determination and he was fearless.

Red Bull said we’ve been watching him now. He’s got the qualities, characteristics, emotional resilience and the behavioural patterns that we need right now in our team. We don’t want a young boy who has not got that fire in his belly to kick back and take this on. Alex may not come back into Formula One now.

Harms: There is nowhere for him to go at this moment in time, but now it’s his moment to respond and react to what has happened to him.

Dr Ro: He may actually end up back down with Alphatauri.

Harms: One of my questions is does this only come with age? 

Actually no, because Pierre Gasly went back to Alphatauri and he is doing incredibly well.

Dr Ro: In fact, so much so that Red Bull are watching him again. Other companies are watching him, but also what’s fascinating there was one race this season where in a car that is midfield he got pole position. It was incredible, but with total determination you can see it through the race he was like I’ve got nothing to lose. 

That day he drove to the track and here’s the emotional reaction, the texts were saying Red Bull aren’t going to take him back, they’re not interested he’s in his car about to start a race, twentysomething. 

Alex Alba on the other hand emotionally gets in the car feeling that shit, Pierre goes I’ve got nothing to lose and smashes it. 

That’s the analogy you need to bring into your lives. Think of yourself as a Formula One racing driver in every situation you face and you have to make a decision that allows you to pivot quickly, not slowly, quickly. What is an instant response that you can make to that set of circumstances that turns it on it’s head so you are empowered in the cockpit of the car if you like, as opposed to sitting on the side watching the car drive by or somebody else is driving it because you feel disempowered.

Harms: Agree and I love Sergio Pérez scenario as an analogy for the day, week, year when he got into the last race his car spun. How many days start like that? You get to the workplace you get that email you don’t want to see that changes the day for you.

Dr Ro: You’ve been side-lined, the company is closing down, your salary has been dropped.

Or it could be simple as you’ve sat in an hour and a half worth of traffic on the way home you’re just about to get home and spend the evening with your family. That’s the spin.

You’re frustrated and angry or you’re just grateful you’re home and you see the kids. 

What do you walk through the door with? What do you choose to get into the car with and drive that race within each day is a race around the track? How do you want to tackle it?

Harms: A final round up here as there are so many lessons for what we’ve just described there I recommend always spend time and look at high performers, how do they come back from adversity?

Dr Ro: Stephen and Roger Black both won gold medals and world Championships Olympic medals from memory.

Harms: Incredible performers and they would have gone through adversity, an injury, whether it’s a young athlete that comes and challenges their position, whether they’ve got a new time to beat, if these things play out and we can take a lot of lessons from high performers.

Dr Ro: If you are looking for a formulaic approach the first thing to write down is see it as it is not worse than it is. So whatever the situation is occurring to you don’t react in any way to start with, the best thing is to write it down. 

Write down in words what exactly the circumstances feel to you as you see them try not to use emotion, just factually write this down. 

You have to write it down and describe how that looks from the outside. Instead of you being emotionally invested in the emotional experience you describe it and then ask yourself a simple question, how do I choose to react to this? 

That is the second part of the process. Now one thing you can do is pattern breaking.

And reframing.

The question number two is how do I choose to respond to this. You’ve got several spins of the back of this, but one is reframing it. So how do you choose to paint that picture differently? What if you rewrote that and it was like a movie how would you describe it?

This is an amazing opportunity my company told me they’re letting me. I’ve been frustrated for the last two years anyway to the point where I’ve been thinking about whether I want to move now they’ve given me the chance to do it. 

This is painting a different picture reframing it and what it allows me to do is take the time to describe all the great qualities I’ve got. There are a few conversations I’ve had in the past about people looking for some private work maybe It’s my opportunity to set up a consultancy business. 

In this example, but that is a classic example of a reframe.

Harms: What are some quick action ones?

Dr Ro: A break pattern is you have to change your physical state first. 

Typical way to break any emotion is to change your physiology, so if anger tends to get you kind of breathing, hyperventilating and tensing your muscles then get outside, take a deep slow breath, take your socks off and run down the garden or something that really shifts your focus. 

If you’re walking down the garden or running in the garden half naked for the sake of argument or when it’s raining outside, or running barefoot you naturally earth which by the way, takes positive ions out of your body and helps you Earth. 

This is a really powerful process. 

Or put on some music that just gets you really fired up or stick on a programme that makes you laugh, but do something that’s the opposite to that emotional state. If you’re feeling frustrated, start to write down 10 things you’re grateful for. 

You might be frustrated about this one thing but let’s tip the balance and if you’ve got kids what are you grateful for about your kids? If you’re healthy, you can be grateful for just being able to breathe and wake up in the morning.

Harms: If you’re feeling frustrated turn that feeling that emotion into fascination, have these triggers and retrain yourself to have these triggers which is if I’m frustrated right now let me split flip that into fascination and look within myself with fascination to find out why am I frustrated? What’s going on here?

Dr Ro: You can just switch a word with the same letter, so turn out anger into awareness. If you get angry about something, have an awareness you’re angry, what am I angry about it?

Try to make it comical, have an awareness but do it in a funny way. 

Why do I need to get angry? 

I’m going to take this opportunity and you break the pattern so anger into awareness, frustration into fascination change the pattern or break the pattern. We do that physiologically by listening to music and jumping up and down. But then ask a question: how can I react differently to this? 

How would Harms or Ro do it? 

Think of an emotional perspective that starts to shift the way you perceive that situation. 

A great way to do this is to be an observer of the moment, so be a silent witness. 

Deepak Chopra has talked about this for years: float out of your body and look at yourself and imagine watching yourself as a cartoon character getting angry, frustrated, feeling down and depressed and saying to yourself how does that look? How can I change that? 

What if I added this and painted something in there, reinvent the circumstances, but break the pattern. You have to put up a block in front of the lake and then redirect the flow of water into a different direction and it has to happen quite quickly so that pattern breaking is really the biggest change that has to happen in that process.

Harms: What comes after breaking the pattern?

Dr Ro: Let’s say the anger has dissipated and it may only dissipate for 10, 20 minutes before it comes back and you break the pattern again, people tend to react in the same physiological way every time. 

If it’s at home it might be the same space, if you get angry in the kitchen where is your favourite room? The lounge or the front deck, outside, but move yourself to a more empowering space and having done that, then you start to change your focus. 

Now you start to ask questions like, what can I do to change my circumstances? How can I empower my moment? It’s making that day your movie for that day. 

Let me repaint this and that’s like who do I need to have around me? 

What decisions do I need to make now and what have I got control over? When you’re writing things down, say what is out of my control and what is in my control. I think that’s the last piece of the pie, decide what you can do and make that first step in a different direction.

Harms: One final question just to support those who have really ingrained patterns and they keep finding themselves falling back into the same pattern, what’s a tip they can do in order to work away from weakening the roots? 

How can they relax this really built pattern they’ve got?

Dr Ro:Everything we’ve just talked about kind of falls into that but it’s finding an emotion that is the opposite to what you’re feeling. 

If for example, frustration really is something you’re feeling a lot, an important question to ask yourself is okay. I’m frustrated with this situation, to break the pan first of all breathe, change physiology, change your emotional state, laugh, shout, go for a run. If you’re sitting down stand-up , if you’re lying down, get up if you’re walking, run. 

Talk to somebody around you or that you know that has an aspirational way of thinking, listen to a podcast. You’ve got to shift the focus as all the focus is inward and it’s all about me and feeling frustrated.

If I’m doing an event for three days and I’ve got a tough crowd I teach because I want to be able to inspire people. I don’t like teaching people that are apathetic that they can’t make a decision about their own lives. It’s so easy that moment in time to just go I can’t be bothered and then why am I giving up my time with my kids. 

So I have a picture in my mind about my kids I’m just grateful that whilst I’m serving these people here I get a chance as a reward at the of a weekend having been way to go back just tell them what I’ve been through talk to them about my experience, but also just looking in their eyes. I’m just internally grateful I have my kids and I know they’re always going to have unconditional love and they’re enthusiastic about everything they do. 

I’m just grateful that there are people in my life who are enthusiastic, as opposed to focusing on the ones who aren’t. But the biggest thing is to change your physiology. 

You know when someone is depressed, their shoulders are down, breathing, their head is down, they’re just depressed, they’re angry, frustrated. 

So the very first thing I’ll do with anybody I just get them on the stage and I tell them to walk round the whole audience and wink at people. They come back on stage and are like how can you do that so quickly that took me two minutes? You change your emotional state, you change your physiology. 

If nothing else, pick up the phone call of five people you know you care about and tell them what’s amazing about them and then put the phone down having given five people unconditional personal positive messages. I challenge anybody having done that to put the phone down and go, where was I? Oh yeah I’m still mad.

Harms: That’s a fantastic one to finish because there’s no excuse to break your own pattern now you have this level of awareness.

That’s myself and Ro signing off. We shall see you on the next episode.



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