When I read a book I take some notes. This is what I took away from 'Change your thinking':
Learn how to analyse thinking around critical incidents by using the following framework:
What are the facts, the situation or circumstances? What is my subjective perception of the event/incident? What evidence supports my subjective perception? What evidence contradicts my subjective perception? Am I making any thinking errors in my interpretation? How else can I perceive the situation?
Thinking or interpretive errors:
Shoulds - normative values Black & white thinking (dichotomies] - grey, more complex Personalising - don’t focus on individual, the personal side Mind reading - ascribing motives etc Filtering - judging by narrowing the criteria Predicting catastrophes - visualising worst case scenarios Comparing - there will always be greater, status envy etc Awfulising - making it more horrible than necessary Blaming - scapegoating Over-generalising - extending to too many cases Labelling - simple categorisation Jumping to conclusions - invalid jumps in logical process Just world fallacy - no reason why the world should be fair or just Hindsight vision - easy looking back
Success definition: ‘You’ve done your personal best at this stage, given your genes, past experiences and present situation’ [B. Montgomery - The truth about success and motivation]
Reasons for non-accomplishment
Unrealistic expectations Lack of focus Low frustration tolerance Giving way to distractions Lower priority tasks Low energy Anxiety Depressed mood Other people Other….
Mindfulness: Observe with curiosity
Body sensations [clothes, contacts with skins, posture, internal tension etc Mood [+, -, neutral] Emotions [sad, happy, angry, excited etc] Issues at back of mind Transient thoughts
Cognitive based therapy
Prefrontal cortex: responsible for thinking, judging, reasoning, evaluation, decision-making, planning and organising - the ‘executive’ part of the brain
Limbic system: functions as the brain’s emotional centre - more primitive part of the brain that, among other things, controls biological drives and responses. One of its structures, the amygdala, plays an important part in emotion and motivation, particularly those related to survival.
The thalamus: a structure for the gateway of information coming from our senses and it usually directs or relays impulses generated by our sensory neurones to appropriate areas of the the prefrontal cortex.
In situations of high threat or emotional charge, the limbic system sends the information directly to the amygdala which creates a state of alarm: during this state the prefrontal cortex is overridden and we often fail to think logically or use sound judgment. At this time we may say or do things that we will later regret. There is a downside to uncontrolled anger, for instance.