conquering fear

A third-wave of cognitive-behavioral therapy … holds that simply observing your critical thoughts without judging them is a more effective way to tame them than pressuring yourself to change or denying their validity. …

“Part of what mindfulness does is get to you to recognize that these critical thoughts are really stories you have created about yourself. They are not necessarily true, but they can have self-fulfilling consequences, … If you can get some distance from them, you can see that there are choices about how to respond.” …

Neuro-imaging studies have shown that when people consider problems mindfully, they use additional brain circuits beyond those that simply involve problem-solving. …

“What happens in mindfulness over the long haul is that you finally accept that you’ve seen this soap opera before and you can turn off the TV.”

Conquering Fear: Wall Street Journal

monsters in your mind

Psychiatrist Dr Daniel Amen has spent a lifetime studying how thoughts influence our appearance, energy and diet success.

His studies have revealed that by ­flipping negative thoughts to positive, we can ­transform our lives for the better.

… the ANT (Automatic Negative Thought), which he describes as “the ­little voices that pop into your head and tell you you’re not good enough, not thin enough, a rubbish daughter, mother, worker.” A few ANTS, he says, can be managed. But he warns to watch out for ANT ­infestations — when thousands of ­negative thoughts start to take over.

The answer, he says, lies in simple ANT-eater techniques that stop the bugs in their tracks, ensuring they never return. “Your brain is a powerful organ,” he says. “If you see yourself as fat, old, wrinkled or forgetful, you boost production of the stress hormone which affects your health, your weight and your mind.

“Negative thoughts can make negative things happen. In the never-ending ­battles, redemption lies in building your own arsenal of ANT-eater solutions. Develop an ANT-eater in your brain that can eat up all the negative thoughts that come into your head.”

Louis Atkinson,