Category - Blog

The Secret To Letting Go
Your VibeCore: What Do You Want?
The “Vibration” Of Flourishing
Life As A “Flow” Experience
Need The Balance Of Negativity?
Our Strengths As Our Values?
The “Idle, Daydreaming” Brain
Are You Too Optimistic?
Your Strengths Are Your “Values”
The UpSpiral of Your Life

The Secret To Letting Go

Letting Go

…Is identifying where you want to attach.

Your VibeCore is a like a magnet of energy you put out that attracts to you what you get in life.

Let’s first talk about the whole idea of a personal vibration. It is not a new idea. You really already know about this if you listen to your “gut” or your intuition, or the sense you have when you walk into a room. It is so much a part of us that we don’t even really notice it, but we use it all the time.

A vibration is your “vibe,” it’s the vibe you put out to others about who and how you are. And it’s the vibe you pick up from others about who and how they are.

It is so close to you it’s almost like an instinct. It can come as a surprise, though, that we may be better at picking up someone else’s vibe more than we are aware of what is our own vibe and what makes it what it is.

The longer you are around another person’s vibe, that you have learned to be so used to their vibe that you can read them in an instant. We sometimes call it reading their “mood,” but this is much more than mood. Mood is an outcome of one’s VibeCore.

Wanting is not an easy thing because we are given so many messages about wanting, and especially about desiring.

We have also been trained, oftentimes, that our wants and wanting are selfish, that we want too much, even that we are greedy.

We are often times told to be satisfied with what we have, that we are never content, always wanting more. Feeling guilt for wanting and desiring is an easy experience for many people.

Wanting what we want is a matter of an issue called “attachment.” Your first job, after you were born, was attachment to the world. We are almost obsessed by “letting go” philosophies and ideas, and for sure there are things we must let go of having, being, and doing.

But the great secret of letting go is to define what it is that you really want to attach to. A focus on letting go takes the energy away from defining the next attachment, the next area of growth, the momentum of forward-moving progress.

Do you have to let go first? No. But you will subtly let go when you even start to think about what you want next, about what is next, about where you are going.

Wanting and desire and attachment are more important than letting go.

You do not have to know in a day, on the spot, what you want. You only have to be guided by your own intention to getting there.

You do not have to have “certitude” that you will get it, but you do have to be aimed at using your real strengths more and more.

Playing to your strengths builds your VibeCore, and should increasingly become your mantra.

© Dr. William K. Larkin 



Your VibeCore: What Do You Want?




Your VibeCore is YOU bringing YOU What You Want.

You have a “vibe” that you transmit as surely as a frequency or signal and it’s rooted in what has brought you what you have in your life.

It is not your positive thinking or your negative thinking that so much attracts what you want or don’t want; it is your “positivity being” or your “negativity being.”

It is the structure of your reasoning and your “meaning-making” system that attracts into your world, what you’re getting and not getting.

That reasoning emerges from “positivity being,” “negativity being,” or a sloppy, transitional mix of the two.

While they help start the movement toward transition, this is much more profound than positive thinking and affirmations.

Your “vibe” sets up your consciousness of the world and exists as the way you see yourself in the mirror and then becomes the world you bring to life.

Your VibeCore is what you want, how much you believe you’re going to get it, and how open you are to however it may come.

If you’re very tight about how what you want has to come, then your reasoning will squeeze what you get until it takes forever, or worse, never comes at all.

Your VibeCore emerges from what’s meaningful for you, that isn’t usually conscious until you get very clear about what you want, which will change or radically sharpen, the clearer you get.

Getting really clear about what you want starts to alter and change your structure of reasoning, how you see your world.

Until you do, your VibeCore brings all kinds of things into your life. It is the structure of your being and it is a “vibe” sending out the signal that is bringing to you what you get.

“POSITIVITY BEING,” not just positive thinking, is what it means to begin to alter the nature of your mind and to be able to live in an UpSpiral of growing consciousness, that brings back the “oneness” you begin to see in the mirror.

© Dr. William K. Larkin 

The “Vibration” Of Flourishing



The brain is at its highest and most potent level of performance is what I call brain synchrony. When we experience brain synchrony, our vibration is really at its best, our vibration is at its healthiest.

When I use the word vibration, I’m really talking about aliveness and I’m talking about it in the same way as Thomas Troward who was an English judge in India, and also a philosopher.

He talks about the human experience that is different than any other experience because of the degree of aliveness that defines humanness. It is his contention that it is our degree of aliveness that makes us human. If we want to take this idea of aliveness apart, and ask what its nature is, we are fundamentally defining our vibration. The amount and the way we are alive to life, our aliveness, pretty well describes our “vibration” or our “vibe.”

Whatever our vibration is, brain synchrony is a signal of it being at its best, with the most efficient “burning” of psychic energy which is its fuel. That fuel certainly is glucose, but it is more than that, ultimately.

When we are experiencing brain synchrony, as opposed to brain conflict, we are effectively using our limited supply of psychic energy, in a day’s time or over a period of time.

When the brain “feels good” it’s most efficient, and the brain is most efficient when you feel good. When you feel good, the brain is at its highest degree of synchrony, doing its best work, being its most efficient, using your psychic energy best.

That doesn’t mean that the brain does not like problems; it does. The brain likes problem solving and flourishes with use. What the brain does not like is working against itself. And the brain works most against itself or at odds with itself, interestingly, when you are doing the same.

The brain can work in a high degree of synchrony even in the midst of pain, danger, and extended use. States like worry, agitated indecision, rage, resentment, jealousy, revenge are states in which the brain works in efficient synchrony, to wear itself out and wear itself down.

In a high degree of brain synchrony we find a high degree of consciousness. With that high degree of synchrony and consciousness we also find a positive, guided, direction-pointed, and for want of a better word “appreciative” vibration.

Appreciating, in this sense, means open, apprehending, discerning, considered, and receptive in a positive sense. Our beliefs and our feelings, our apprehensions create vibrations that most affect the binding activity of  ligands to cells, affecting the very basic activity of cells.

Dr. Barbara Fredrickson told us in her landmark research that one of the effects of positive emotion was thriving at a cellular level.

Our “vibe” is all about thriving at a cellular level.

The phrase that I would use beyond thriving is “flourishing at the level of the communities of cells.”

© Dr. William K. Larkin 

Life As A “Flow” Experience

Flow Brained


Anything in life can be a flow experience.

Just go back and remind yourself of the steps for creating flow and you know that anything can be a flow activity, if you can get to “oneness” with it- forget yourself and get to that point where you are one with the music of whatever you’re doing.

What is amazing is that “flow” is like a drug or a medication.

We are concerned about the affects of drugs and medications, particularly psychotropic or psychological drugs.

What we don’t realize is that social interaction, the way we think, what we talk about and the social context around us affects us, particularly the brain, as much, if not more than drugs, in the long-term.

Your thoughts affect the development of neuropathways in the brain.

Negative and anxious conversations about “bad” things and people affect the amygdala of the brain which is a center of fear, negativity and anxiety.

The more you focus on the negative, the more extensive and tightly bound are the neuropathways that are connected to the negative memories that are held by the left hemisphere.

The words we use, the conversations we have, and the images and programs we take in have the power to create a DownSpiral of negativity that releases cortisol, a major stress hormone, adrenaline, thyroxin (long-term adrenalin), and ACTH, the body’s basic stress response.

Don’t like to take medication?

Don’t want to use drugs?

Then make “flow” the medication you use.

As it shifts you from your left hemisphere dominance to the larger picture of the right hemisphere, that sense of being one with the music, that subtle shift turns the “feel good” chemicals and gives you distance, perspective and it adds to the neuropositive reservoir.

The more you are in flow and the more you experience being “one with the music”, the more you build it into your life, you are building your reservoir of psychological capital and you are also building a “buffer zone” of positivity.

© Dr. William K. Larkin 

Need The Balance Of Negativity?



Illustration of positive and negative. Plus and minus.Does “happy” sound trite to you?

Need the “balance” of the negative?

You would neither be afraid of facing what is negative or need to deny that the negative is everywhere if you were grounded in what an increased capacity for positive emotion means for your brain and for you.

It is not a matter of just changing your thinking and it is not a matter of just being happy.

You do not live where you think, you live where you feel, and in the “incubator” of your experiences that produces the state of mind or feeling state that you’re in.

The life of positive emotion in us, freely accessible and lived, is like good nutrition as opposed to eating frozen dinners.

We find our lives of creativity and meaning in our capacity for positive emotion and in learning to live from it.

For most folks, the enlarged capacity for positive emotion is a foreign idea they assume they understand.

Your enlarged and engaged life of contentment and satisfaction is grounded in your capacity for positive emotion.

It is not grounded in resolving your past mistakes or conflicts. Your negativity is grounded there.

That negativity waits, hopes, and breathes in anticipation that you will try to “work through” your defensive, negative armour and be engaged for years in resolution of your issues.

While at the same time, in another part of your brain, the capacity for positive emotion, growth, increased options, thriving, and flow waits patiently in your life.

The increased experience of enlarging the capacity for positive emotion engages the brain in a process that creates transition and moving into a whole new structure of consciousness that stops using what doesn’t work.

It unearths, one day a time, the defensive behavior that doesn’t fit the nature of positive emotion and its perception of what the new options and new strengths can do.

People change when they feel safe, they do not change when they experience threat, at least not over the long term.

© Dr. William K. Larkin 




Our Strengths As Our Values?


Our signature strengths, the top five big ones that we can test to identify, are expressed as values, our “core values.”

What a concept.

Let’s think about values.

They are standards or guides to how we are most who we are.

When we live most consistently aligned to our values, a way of life that is most expressive of our true nature is formed.

Our valuing takes the form of these strengths as one of the strongest indicators and answer to the question, “Who am I?”

I have never heard a person who has found out what their strengths are ever ask, “Who am I?”

They know.

Take any problem you think you have and talk to your strengths.

Yes, have a dialogue with one or more of your strengths.

Ask of it, “with this or that in my life, how do I apply this strength? What does this strength have to tell me, teach me?”

How have I created my world from this strength that is also a value? And where in my world am I furthest from its expression or truth?

Where you are closest, you will be happiest, most content and grounded in easy joy.

Where you are far enough a way from this strength, you will find how you devalue yourself and your life and live in a disembodied and compromised life.

It will usually be experienced as anxiety, flat lining, or even depression.

The fundamental expression of a strength as a life value is as a lens to filter out what doesn’t fit and the delusion that allows it to remain.

Our strengths seek the restoration of the truth of who we are and provides the joy that results. It restores our presence to ourselves and to others.

As you dialog with your strengths, can you hear this message…?

“I fill my shoes and they are solid to the ground, my gait is centered with my posture and it is sure. I am firm footed. I sit in my seat, I fit and I am there, present. I am a part of the beauty and excellence I see accurately around me.”

I am learning to embody my strengths, to go beyond an intellectualized understanding of what they are, and to live in them, with clarity and connectedness I can feel.

© Dr. William K. Larkin 

The “Idle, Daydreaming” Brain


The brain is never idle and never inactive.  The brain is always at work, especially when we sleep.

Today I went to one of my favorite places, the 99 cent store, to pick up one thing. I went in without a list and I spent $34.00 on 34 things.

I’m happy to report that I DID get the one thing I went to get.  I have gone to the store without a list and come home with several things except what I went for.

That’s a simple story, but the lesson is there -the brain needs a list or a specific goal in focus or it shops everywhere for everything.

We need to tell the brain what we want it to do, we need to have focus and attention, and we need to practice that focus and attention so we can stay on track.  That includes “idle time”.  We think that daydreaming is idle time, but the brain is still working.

Studies show us that idle time, where the brain can wander can be creative.  However, if the thoughts of the brain go in a negative direction, the result is anxiety, dread, fear or discomfort -the sense of threat at some level.  That moves us into the sympathetic nervous system of “threat” or fight/flight, our cortisol rises and the hormones of stress kick into gear.

Thyroxin, which is long-term adrenaline, can stay in the system as long as 4 days.  Idle time spent daydreaming that goes in a negative direction is not healthy.

My advice is that daydreaming is fine as long as you manage it and keep it going in a positive direction, and that will be more creative.

Daydreaming that goes off in a negative direction is like going to a store where there is nothing you need, lots of things you don’t need and bringing the especially bad things home.

My critics will say that the negative day-dreaming brings up issues that need to be resolved.  I disagree.  I think that’s not true.

Negative issues that need to be addressed are those that continue to rise up in us in one way or another.

If we get everyday needless negative feelings out of the way and build up a positive reservoir, the truly negative things will focus because you will have a greater sense of security (safety) in allowing them to do so from this more positive base that we have built.

It is often the negative feelings of an idle brain that creates rumination, worrying, dream and a sense of threat.

© Dr. William K. Larkin 

Are You Too Optimistic?


Can you be?

Some studies claim that too much optimism can be dangerous and cause overly risky behavior.

You can always find a study somewhere that will take the air out of your balloon.

So is the answer to be more pessimistic or more effectively optimistic?

How’s this?

Is it better to DownSpiral until you feel more negatively, find things wrong with most everything else in the process, and narrow your focus and your options?

Or claim that positive energy, and be more effectively and efficiently optimistic?

Pessimism or more negativity is not the answer. Your brain is more naturally optimistic than pessimistic; it’s necessary for evolution.

The answer to the research that shows the dangers of optimism is not that you need to be more negative but that you can be more effectively positive.

You don’t have to check your optimism at the door in favor digging for a little pessimism.

You don’t have to move from safety to feeling threat to manage your optimism.

If you are building castles in the air, use the same creativity and imagination to put foundations underneath the ones that mean the most to you.

Pessimism narrows your options and full access to your strengths.

And here is the key issue: do you know what your strengths are?

Optimism, especially high levels of optimism that might have a tendency toward impulsiveness, need to be grounded in one of your positive strengths that provide a balance for you in your life.

And you can be sure they are there if you know your scientifically tested strengths.

Your Strengths are your performance tools. You use them when you encounter challenges.

They are like the fuel in your car.

In certain situations, you may need to accelerate and use more fuel to increase your speed.

Your strengths provide you with that “performance boost” in any and every situation of your life.

How you regard your strengths and what you are willing to do with them is like the decision to eat or not eat good food.

You can get by on the junk food of your weaknesses, but what builds your sense of self and very directly the happiness you experience, is your decision to flex the muscles of your strengths, to use them more and more, and to put yourself in situations where they are used.

Strengths move you toward life and aliveness. Playing to weaknesses moves you toward deterioration.

It starts with feeling disconnected and moves to feeling disengaged, disenchanted, unappreciated, unseen, unnoticed. Feeling unappreciated appears as the State of Mind of loneliness.

That’s usually the place where we start looking for someone else to fill the absence of ourselves that we have created.

When you engage your strengths in an UpSpiral of feeling good, you are meeting challenges head on, from the higher ground of your real self.

© Dr. William K. Larkin 





Your Strengths Are Your “Values”



Strengths are also called virtues and values because of their fundamental importance. They are your ways of “being” who you really are. They are your “mental compass.”

These superhighways of neuropathways are unique to you and they are the only ones that you can travel and be who you really are.

Your values, as your strengths, are who you are. Get off the highway and some voice within you, rst of all your feelings, will start to give you messages that you need to change your direction, make a turn, take the next exit and go back – just as surely as the GPS system for a car won’t give up until you’re on the right track.

The greater your alignment, your consistency and your focus is on your strengths, the more in alignment with your Real Self you are going to feel.

You will feel more in sync, more in control, more in harmony, more like you are “in your own skin.”

It is when we play to our weaknesses that we begin to feel “out of sync,” disconnected, out of alignment, anxious, frustrated, and in a state of discord.

The more you use your strengths, that are also your basic values and virtues, the happier you will be.

Restless, listless, out-of-sync, unsettled and out of your own skin; these are the word that describe us when we are not playing to our strengths. They are the things we experience when we are playing to our weaknesses.

When you know your strengths (because they have been scientifically tested) it’s easier to play to your strengths so long as you stay in an UpSpiral.

In a DownSpiral or when we are down spiraling, we will not play to our strengths, but rather to their opposites, which are our weaknesses or our character defects.

The opposites of our strengths are wonderful things because they warn us by feeling restless, listless, out-of-sync, unsettled, bored, irritable, and frustrated. The more we play to our weaknesses the worse these things get.

Your weaknesses that are the opposite of your strengths are uniquely yours. Only you really know what they are.

Take a piece of paper and list your strengths, then list what is the opposite of that strength for you.

How does the weakness side of the strengths show up for you?

What is your unique way of doing and “being” the opposite of your strengths, your VALUES?

© Dr. William K. Larkin 

The UpSpiral of Your Life



What Is An UpSpiral?

It is living at a higher quality of life by managing the ups and downs of life more effectively. The research is overwhelmingly clear.

It is creating a mood predisposition and it is State of Mind Management (SOMM). It is living more up than down by using the power of your choice and learning the ways to do it.

An UpSpiral ranges from a conviction, a belief in a life imbued with optimistic, and being generally “on top of it.”

The DownSpiral is just the opposite, a belief in helplessness and victimhood. At its lowest point, it is despondency and despair, characterized by pervasive pessimism.


Most people live far lower in the UpSpiral than they need to be, and most people yo-yo between being somewhere in the UpSpiral and somewhere in the DownSpiral.

We have come to believe that this up- and-down is a normal part of life, when, in fact, it is just learned behavior.

We have far more choice and ability to remain in an UpSpiral that we usually know or believe.

Is it possible to be very high in an UpSpiral all of the time?

First, our research for the last dozen years shows us that people can live in an UpSpiral most all of the time, once they learn how to do it.

Second, it is also fair to say that we can live somewhere in the UpSpiral all of the time; that DownSpiral experiencing isn’t really necessary. We may not always be high up in the Spiral, but we can always be living life somewhere with the belief that we are indeed living an UpSpiral life.

Despair and the narrowing of depression aren’t necessary. It doesn’t have to be.

We live by this myth that there are ups and downs in life and that they are largely created by external events.

The truth is that, for the most part, there are external events to which we respond and our response to these events determines where we are in the Spiral, not the event itself.

Either you are a victim of a difficulty or you are stripping a problem of everything it has to teach you and becoming stronger and wiser.

Or you are learning to let one door close so another can open.

100% is the promise of our work. 100% of your time in an UpSpiral.

You’re learning the skills of the UpSpiral, you can learn them so well never to be in a DownSpiral. The oppression of the DownSpiral is a choice that is learned over a lifetime, but it can be unlearned and our time does not have to be spent there.

© Dr. William K. Larkin 


Copyright © 2015 The Applied Neuroscience Institute