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Does anyone go to ACA here?

Discussion in 'Family, Friends and Relationships' started by Endlessagony, Feb 28, 2018.

  1. I like the meditation exercises. Those help actually retrain our brains to not think on autopilot, so to speak. But some of the other ones I think would only go so far. Anyway, that's my opinion. And your take on unconditional love is your opinion.
     
  2. Lara_C

    Lara_C SF Supporter

    There's so much in our minds that obstructs our happiness and well-being which we are not always aware of, so what you say about thinking on autopilot is a very good point. We are conditioned from birth to think in certain ways and its often only in therapy such as CBT that we become fully conscious of the hidden programming which is undermining us.
     
  3. Yes, we're definitely conditioned to think certain ways, but what I mean by autopilot is this: you walk into the kitchen and decide you want to put a frozen pizza in the microwave for lunch. Then all of a sudden your kid says he/she hungry too, and they want peanut butter and jelly. You open the freezer, grab the pizza, and give it to your kid, still frozen.

    That would be the mind working on autopilot. You mean to do one thing, but you end up doing another because your mind is thinking about other things while you're attempting to do the task at hand. When you don't realize what you're thinking about, your mind is on autopilot. Mindfulness and meditation teach you to be aware of those thoughts and recognize them as merely thoughts, so that you're not constantly thinking while doing other things. Instead, you would be able to give your full attention to what you're doing.
     
  4. Lara_C

    Lara_C SF Supporter

    Yes, probably most of our thoughts are a waste of mental energy - repetitive, pointless and negative.
     
  5. Absolutely. Many of them are repetitive and negative. And many of them are also subconscious. We have no idea we're even thinking them, but the prefrontal cortex still reacts to subconscious thoughts emotionally. And before we know it, we feel like shit.
     
    Lara_C likes this.
  6. Lara_C

    Lara_C SF Supporter

    Would be interested in what you think of combining mindfulness meditation to turn attention away from noisy mind chatter, with CBT to bring dysfunctional thought patterns to light and challenge them.
     
  7. To each their own, of course, but CBT has never particularly helped me. Same with DBT, aside from a couple of small things in particular, like practicing validation in interpersonal relationships. This is probably mainly because I already knew what I was doing wrong, I just couldn't change it.

    What helped me start to change it more than anything else was a book called "The Subtle Art of Not Giving A Fuck" by Mark Mason. He explains, in practical, non-scientific terms how the brain, thought processes, beliefs and values, work and how to change them.

    Another really good one is "Stumbling on Happiness" by Daniel Gilbert. This one more scientific. He's a psychologist and explains why our brains do the various things they do. For example, they both plug things into and take things out from memory. We end up thinking that we remember an event from the past, but what we are really remembering is the emotions we felt. Our brains always remember the emotions more so than the actual event. We have to remember things this way because if we associate something with negative emotions, we know not to do it again.

    As far as mindfulness and meditation, I do happen to think they help, regardless of whether we are in distress or not at the time. They help us see thoughts as merely thoughts, and literally train the brain to focus on what we want it to focus on, not what it feels like focusing on.
     
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  8. Lara_C

    Lara_C SF Supporter

    An interesting finding is how malleable memories are - they're like stories which are edited and reconstructed with each re- telling. Further, " to each re-telling there are attached emotional details. So when the story is altered feelings are also reshaped" suggesting a basis for the treatment of conditions like post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety disorders, and addiictions https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/am-i-right/201307/your-memory-isnt-what-you-think-it-is
     
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2018
  9. Another thing is we actually don't remember our emotions correctly a lot of the time. There was a study done during the Al Gore/George Bush election. Researchers asked volunteers how they predicted they would feel if their candidate lost. Both groups said that they would be devastated if their candidate lost and elated if they won. After the election, it turned out that the people whose candidate won weren't as elated as they'd predicted and the people who's candidate lost weren't as devastated as they predicted. Regardless of this, some time into the future, they were asked how they remembered feeling after the election. They answered that they were more devastated than they actually felt at the time, and more elated than they were at the time.
     
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  10. Lara_C

    Lara_C SF Supporter

    As the author of the article I cited above said "we all recognize that our memories are like Swiss cheese; what we now know is that they are more like processed cheese" !! Was just thinking about so-called false memory syndrome, but modifying traumatic memories through hypnotic suggestion would be a good thing.
     
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2018
  11. Ah, yes. Manson actually talks about that in his book. He gives an example about some woman who went through various trials of hypnosis in the 80's, when child molestation was beginning to get a lot of attention. Her therapist kept insisting she had repressed memories. Eventually, she began thinking her father had molested her. When she confronted him about it, he denied it. It wasn't until after her father died that false memory syndrome came about as a diagnosis. Talk about a "whoops" moment.