Dreading Monday morning? If you’re feeling this way, what, exactly, do you say to yourself to dispel worry and get in a better frame of mind before the working day begins? (Get a grip, you can do this, stop worrying?) If these familiar phrases don’t work, it could be because your subconscious mind — the part of you that can hold on to old, negative thinking patterns — just isn’t listening.

Research shows that words and pictures when plugged in to our subconscious during sleep can positively affect our beliefs. A study at Northwestern University, Chicago, shows that sleep could be the key to reprogramming unconscious attitudes about gender and race: when a noise associated with a picture of a woman and science words was played as they slept, those participants showed a reduction in social bias to women within STEM careers. If it’s possible to affect beliefs through the subconscious, then there’s much we can do to help ourselves every day by communicating directly with this part of ourselves. And one way to access our subconscious power is by using Switchwords – words that ‘switch on’ the subconscious and programme in positive thoughts and associations. Defined by Freud, Switchwords access the parts of us that cause inner conflict — and help reduce and release it. There are hundreds of effective Switchwords in use today, including some dedicated to lifting worry and anxiety — so, If you’ve ever suffered from Monday-morning blues, or low mood on any other day, for that matter, here’s how to improve your mood instantly (and no, not by going back to sleep!)

The Anti-Anxiety Chant

Repeat silently or aloud:


PURGE-CANCEL deletes negative thoughts, BLUFF lowers anxiety, while SHINE gives you an emotional cleanse and lifts your mood instantly. Try it now; when you’ve finished chanting, imagine that your worries are being taken care of. Also, follow your next impulse; your subconscious knows what you need to do now to lift your spirits (you might find that you’re compelled to be kinder to yourself rather than berate yourself for worrying, for example). For more, check out some of the case studies in “Switchwords: Use One Word to Get What You Want in Life”