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Relaxing in Difficult Times

Relaxing in Difficult Times

This week, the world is giving us more reasons to be tense. It can be hard to take care of ourselves but so important to do so. So for times like these, it’s important to direct the mind from the part where emotional activation occurs, to the part that that allows us to calm ourselves. We’ll do this by focusing on a directed thought exercise will help us to relax.

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Guiding the Mind to Feel Better

Guiding the Mind to Feel Better

This week, let’s get rid of another unhelpful cognitive distortion that can lead us into feeling depressed or anxious. This one is what’s called the mental filter. This is where you pick out a single negative detail and dwell on it exclusively so that your vision of all reality becomes darkened. It’s the mental equivalent of adding a drop of black ink to a glass of water. It will make all the water dark.

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Quarantine Mindfulness

Quarantine Mindfulness

One might think the stepping back so many of us are experiencing in this quarantine could naturally promote mindfulness. But sometimes a house full of people with unstructured time can also mean more noise and stress. When we start feeling stressed, there’s a quick, simple mindfulness practice that may help. This is a mental exercise to decrease the reactivity we have throughout the day. This one can even be humorous, if you’d like.

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Self Gratitude and Motivation

Self Gratitude and Motivation

The main issue my patients seemed to struggle with, this past week, was feeling unmotivated to do more with this time and then guilty about that. Besides the obvious benefits of forgiving ourselves for this time our nervous systems seem to need to adjust to this new reality, are there tools to feel less guilty, that could even lead to more motivation? Thankfully, there’s an enjoyable one, that really seems to help. I call it the Self Gratitude Exercise.

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