Tuesday, 2 June 2020

Fear of following your dreams

Toward the end of April 1519, after months of illness, the artist Leonardo da Vinci felt certain that his death was only a few days away. For the past two years Leonardo had been living in the chateau of Cloux in France, the personal guest of the French king, Francois I. The king had showered him with money and honors, considering him the living embodiment of the Italian Renaissance, which he had wanted to import to France. Leonardo had been most useful to the king, advising him on all kinds of important matters. But now, at the age of sixty-seven, his life was about to end and his thoughts turned toward other things. He made out his will, received the holy sacrament in church, and then returned to his bed, waiting for the end to come. As he lay there, several of his friends--including the king--visited him. They noticed that Leonardo was in a particularly reflective mood. He was not someone who usually liked to talk about himself, but now he shared memories from his childhood and youth, dwelling on the strange and improbable course of his life. Leonardo had always had a strong sense of fate, and for years he had been haunted by one particular question: is there some kind of force from within that makes all living things grow and transform themselves? That is why they resort to shouting, groundless accusations, and other manipulation techniques in a bid to get the person to back down. Since narcissists are not developed emotionally, they are hypersensitive. This enables them to give a personalized and intense reaction to whatever happens. Being out of touch with their real self, they are usually entangled to the person that is unfortunate to be the source of their narcissistic needs. This entanglement makes the other person responsible for soothing and inflating their ego, safety, purpose, sense of value, etc In other words, this person is held accountable for the narcissistic person's wholeness, not them. Most of the time, this person might believe they are in a normal two-way relationship, ignorant of the impact in the narcissist's life. Generally, the actions, speech, and what this person doesn't do, resonate with a narcissist and they feel it is always about them. This doesn't pose a problem if whatever happens to benefit the narcissist. On the contrary, if this does not favor the narcissists, she considered himself outsmarted, cheated, and betrayed which causes him a lot of pain.

Maybe it was because he had so far to go, but this young man was showing promise, and the counselor would do all he could to nurture it. Hunter dropped the article with a loud THUD on Tim's desk. Here's the article the Boys and Girls Club wants me to read, Mr. Hinkle. But readin' ain't my thing. I hated school, and if it wasn't for cheatin' and teachers passin' me on so they wouldn't have to see me again, I'd have been in twelfth grade `til I aged out at 21. Hinkle frowned seriously, even though he was slightly amused by the big man's desperation. You're terrified of these words, eh, Hunter? Hunter pointed to the tome as if it was radioactive. Well, look at it! This bone loss is a natural part of the ageing process but will vary greatly from one person to another. One person may lose bone slowly, while another person's fast loss may result in more than averagely porous bones. For all of us, it's essential to eat a well-balanced diet rich in calcium and vitamin D. These two are the body's natural bone builders, but getting enough vitamin D naturally can be hard because most comes from sunlight. Vitamin D is very important for our bone health (across all ages) and ensuring that you get enough vitamin D is essential. The vitamin D recommendations published by the Royal Osteoporosis Society in 2018 advise people aged 65 and over, and people who are not exposed to much sun, to consume 10 micrograms of vitamin D a day. The 10 microgram supplement may appear on the label as 400 IU - 1 microgram equals 40 international units (IU). Vitamin D is made naturally in our skin during the summer months from exposure to the sun's ultraviolet B (UVB) rays. We require vitamin D to help our body to absorb the calcium, but exposure can be limited in many Northern European countries, including the UK, and also for those who are unwell and/or are confined indoors and for those who wear body concealing clothing for cultural reasons. You will get some vitamin D during April to September because the UVB rays from the sun are of the right wavelength to allow our bodies to make vitamin D.

If such a force in nature existed, he wanted to discover it, and he looked for signs of it in every thing he examined. It was an obsession. Now, in his final hours, after his friends had left him alone, Leonardo would have almost certainly applied this question in some form or another to the riddle of his own life, searching for signs of a force or a fate that had brought about his own development and guided him to the present. Leonardo would have begun such a search by first thinking back to his childhood in the village of Vinci, some twenty miles outside Florence. His father, Ser Piero da Vinci, was a notary and staunch member of the powerful bourgeoisie, but since Leonardo had been born out of wedlock, he was barred from attending the university or practicing any of the noble professions. His schooling therefore was minimal, and so as a child Leonardo was left mostly to himself. He liked most of all to wander through the olive groves around Vinci or to follow a particular path that led to a much different part of the landscape--dense forests full of wild boar, waterfalls cascading over fast-moving streams, swans gliding through pools, strange wildflowers growing out of the sides of cliffs. The intense variety of life in these forests enthralled him. One day, sneaking into his father's office, he grabbed some sheets of paper--a rather rare commodity in those days, but as a notary his father had a large supply. He took the sheets on his walk into the forest, and sitting upon a rock he began to sketch the various sights around him. To let out that pain, she resorts to an outburst. Boundaries are essential in life, even though many people have no regard for personal space. We have markers and fences in our front yard that serve as boundaries. We have a gate in front of our house to keep away unwanted people and the elements. People respect physical limitations since there are clear signs to keep others in check. Personal boundaries, on the other hand, are not visible. This makes it easy for other people to violate them, especially a narcissist. People who have been in a relationship with a narcissist know that one of the hallmarks of healing and recovery is having and enforcing healthy boundaries. One of the twisted realities that exist in the mind of a narcissist is that others exist to serve them, especially their victim. As a result, they believe their need is way more important than others.

It's 200 articles. I'll never get through that. His voice became tight, and he looked away to hide the tears he felt might betray his fear of letting Darrell--and Jennifer--down again. Readin' bores me to death, and it don't make sense to me. The counselor placed a hand on his shoulder. I get that it's tough for you, but calm down, dude. It's just a article. How have you tried to read it? Tell me what you do. Hunter took in a deep breath and whooshed it out. But during the winter we get no vitamin D from sunlight (even if it is a sunny autumn/winter's day, we're too far away from the sun), and so it is important to get enough sun exposure for vitamin D in the summer. It is difficult to ensure high vitamin D levels through food products as vitamin D is in a limited number of foods. That said, vitamin D is available from nuts, especially Brazil nuts and almonds; A healthy, nutritious diet will help preserve healthy bones and skin, as well as fight disease and boost immunity. If you are a menopausal woman, perhaps it's time to look at your eating habits and to make some changes. For a healthy adult skeleton, ensure your diet is both varied and nutritious. Look at what makes up a healthy diet and follow the advice shown in Public Health England's Eatwell guide, shown above. If you are concerned about your eating habits, speak to the practice nurse/dietician at your local GP surgery. What should we eat to beat osteoporosis? As adults we constantly require sufficient calcium and vitamin D to strengthen and maintain our bones, helping to slow down the rate of bone loss.

He kept returning day after day to do more of the same; He had no teachers, no paintings to look at; He noticed that in drawing things he had to observe them much more closely and catch the details that made them come to life. Once he sketched a white iris, and in observing it so closely he was struck by its peculiar shape. The iris begins as a seed, and then it proceeds through various stages, all of which he had drawn over the past few years. What makes this plant develop through its stages and culminate in this magnificent flower, so unlike any other? Perhaps it possesses a force that pushes it through these various transformations. He would wonder about the metamorphosis of flowers for years to come. Alone on his deathbed, Leonardo would have thought back to his earliest years as an apprentice in the studio of the Florentine artist Andrea del Verrocchio. He had been admitted there at the age of fourteen because of the remarkable quality of his drawings. They have no real sense of being, so they rely on others for power. A major characteristic of people with narcissistic personality disorder is a complete disregard for boundaries. This affects their relationships with people at work as well as at home. Even in social settings, they are often viewed as inappropriate because they are the ones that dominate the conversation or make an insensitive remark. Personal boundaries could be physical, mental, or emotional limits. They are there to guide us from manipulations and unfair treatment. The boundaries are there to put a distinction on your wants and feelings from that of others. This, most times, does not sit well with the narcissist, so they see it as rejection. They take it as cruelty on their feelings, emotions, and needs. A narcissist can be likened to a toddler that throws tantrums at every objection to their needs.

Monday, 1 June 2020

Lack of mental stimulation and training

Repeat this for several minutes. Her sister would simply sneer at her and call her fat. As an adult, Daisy dropped out of her mother's and sister's lives almost entirely. The first time they saw each other was at their father's memorial, several days after he died. Ellen, now a mother and a successful fitness instructor, was civil to her sister, but Daisy recognized the smirks and inflections under the veneer. Her mother just looked at her and commented that she was glad Daisy had finally surfaced, though later in the evening she overheard her mother and sister commenting on her weight. After her father's death, Daisy began to feel pressured to do little things for her mother. This didn't include any apologies or pleas for a better relationship but consisted of her mother and sister's steadfast insistence that Daisy owed her a duty. The least you can do is take care of her, Ellen would say. Cousins that she still kept up with would call on her mother's behalf and want to know why she wouldn't spend time with her mother, never accepting that Daisy's childhood had been anything but wonderful, like her sister's. She's alone now, they would say, or that was a long time ago, I'm sure it wasn't so bad. You might have heard a lot about how genes determine many aspects of your health, your hormones, and even your personality. However, new research indicates that although we can't yet change our genes, we can affect how they express themselves. Diet, herbs, supplements, exercise, sleep, and even psychological support can all have an enormous influence on which of our genes step onto center stage and which remain quietly in the background. This is amazing news! It means that even if you have a genetic predisposition to certain conditions--for example, diabetes--the right diet and lifestyle can often cue your problematic genes to remain silent so you can successfully avoid your genetic risk. Regardless of your genetic inheritance, you can have enormous power over your own health. Believe me, I know how good sugar can taste! But it is such a problematic and addictive food choice that I'd like to steer you away from it as much as possible. A little sugar probably won't hurt you now and then, but it's almost impossible to hold your sugar intake to a little sugar.

For most people, eating an occasional sweet snowballs into eating the whole container. In this crazed world, you need to let up on your expectations, especially of yourself. You can use the breath in this exercise to help you cultivate appreciation and compassion toward your efforts and accomplishments. Most of the time what you have, are, do, and have achieved is enough. A sigh releases a bit of tension and can be practiced as a means of relaxing. Sit in a chair or stand straight. Inhale deeply through the nose. Sigh deeply, letting out a sound of deep relief as air rushes out your lungs and out your mouth. Let new air come in naturally through the nose. Lie down on your back, your arms slightly out from your sides, palms up. Your legs should be separate and fall open, relaxed. It was a grind, and eventually, Daisy gave in but soon regretted doing so. When she goes to visit her mother, some variant of the following takes place: Her mother brags about Ellen, going on about how pretty she is, how well-off she is, where she and her husband are going this summer or over the holidays, how smart she is, what a wonderful job she did in the articleants, and how wonderful it is that she is raising her own daughter, Taylor, to follow in her footsteps, getting her started with the articleants and the athletics. Interspersed with this are critical comments about Daisy's weight and figure, her job, and how she had better find someone to support her because, as Mom is happy to point out, you sure as hell can't take care of yourself. This theme has become so constant that it creeps into phone conversations and occasionally even emails, which has left Daisy feeling the way she did as a child: angry, exhausted, and depressed. Daisy's story is the story of a grown child of a malignant narcissist. At its most basic, her mother saw her children as a reflection of her, rather than as separate people in their own right. In the mother's eyes, Daisy does not represent her in the way she thinks she should be represented by a daughter, she is too academic and too fat. For Daisy's mother, a woman with an athletic shape, with hard muscles rather than soft curves, is the epitome of feminine beauty and the height of desirability. That is how she sees herself, that what Ellen became, and so that is the way to be.

On the other hand, she sees Daisy's soft, curvy physique as fat, weak and undesirable. Contrary to popular belief, this is not a question of willpower. Your brain responds to sugar much the way as it does to cocaine and heroin, so it makes sense that your body feels like it can't get enough. And, like cocaine and heroin, sugar doesn't do your body any favors! As we've seen, sweet foods throw your blood sugar out of balance and contribute to insulin resistance, which quickly leads to weight gain. Imbalanced hormones disrupt your thyroid (which regulates metabolism) and your sex hormones (which, among other things, regulate your sex drive and your feelings of sensuality). So next time you're tempted by a sweet treat, remember how unsexy it can make you feel! In his article, Diet Rehab, psychologist Mike Dow cites a March 2010 study by The Scripps Research Institute showing that rats who were fed high-fat, high-sugar diets of bacon, sausage, chocolate, and cheesecake developed neurochemical dependencies that might be described literally as food addictions. These rats actually suffered from withdrawal-like symptoms when they were deprived of their sweet, high-fat diet--which is often the experience my patients describe. Sugar triggers many feel-good brain chemicals, to which some people have a much stronger response than others. If you are one of these people, it may be even harder for you to resist sugar. Your eyes should be closed. Sense your whole body, especially the points where it touches the surface you are lying on. Scan your body, relaxing each part as you come to it. This is preparation for breath awareness. You will be focusing on receiving your inhalations. Imagine that all the doors of every cell of your body are opened by the incoming breath. Imagine that your body is full of liquid and as you inhale the liquid flows down into the rise of your belly. As you exhale, imagine the liquid flowing from your lower abdomen toward your nose. Understand the characteristics of free breathing: the whole body oscillates, the breath arises through the diaphragm, the breath arises from within, the breath expands in all directions, the breath is calm and regular.

Find a quiet and relaxing place to either sit or stand to practice free breathing. All of this means that Daisy will be a frequent target of her narcissistic mother's ire. Deeply insecure regarding relationships, generally finding them to be unsatisfying or even toxic. Deeply cynical, seeing narcissism in everyone with whom they come into contact. Abused and spent at work or school, without a clue as to why everything and everyone is giving them such a hard time. Daisy's story demonstrates the power of these feelings, especially her sense of being devalued and her insecurity regarding relationships, but it also illustrates the extreme importance of external validation to the narcissist as well as their overblown sense of entitlement. Their self-esteem and the armor that protects their inner weakness and vulnerability depend on it. In this case, Mom was an athlete in her own right and a coach to a winning high school team. She lived for the external validation that her team victories brought into her life, the status it bestowed upon her as the coach, and she felt desperately entitled to recapturing that through her daughters, molding them into the perfect reflections of her. For people with a narcissistic personality disorder, it's less of a question of how and more of a question of why. As for why they do it, it's because their nature as malignant narcissists leaves them without emotional empathy and with a feeling of complete entitlement, especially over those who they see as inferior to themselves. Unfortunately, the effects of sugar never last long, and then you start looking for another fix. I encourage you to choose longer-lasting and healthier forms of satisfaction. Artificial sweeteners also make it difficult to lose weight because they interfere with the body's ability to associate sweetness with a high-calorie food. This is called calorie dysregulation, and it explains how you can keep eating long after your body has had all the calories it requires. Restore your natural sense of hunger and fullness by avoiding both real sweeteners (including honey) and artificial ones. The three exceptions are stevia, xylitol, and erythritol, all of which are natural ingredients that don't seem to alter your blood-sugar levels nearly as much as other sugars, which makes them safe to use as you will. Sugar Plus Caffeine: A Dangerous Combination One of the worst things you can do for your hormone balance is to load your caffeinated drinks up with sugar. The combination of sugar and caffeine sends your adrenal glands into overdrive, fooding your body with stress hormones and contributing to weight gain, insulin resistance, and hormonal imbalance.

Food sensitivities are surprisingly common--and frequently misunderstood. The breathing out is a little longer than breathing in. In free breathing, the breath has variations and is adaptable--it's effortless and relaxed. Sitting cross-legged or in a chair, half-smile. Inhale and exhale deeply through your nose. Maintain this half-smile. Let go at the end of the out-breath, letting the thoughts go. It is like moving a boulder away so that water can keep flowing. Your energy and life force will be able to evolve and go forward, like the water you just released, when you let go. Go to a garden and just stand in it. Breathe in the air, the fragrances, the light, the temperature, the music of the plant and animal life in the garden. Finally, the narcissist will show a distorted view of others and the world around them that therapists call one-mindedness, the assumption that everyone thinks the way the narcissist does, especially their notions of right and wrong. They are incapable of looking at a situation except from their own point of view, which they see as the only correct view. Since they cannot understand that there can be different, yet equally valid, ways of seeing something, they react with hostility as though they have been personally criticized and insulted. It is in the nature of daughters to seek the love and approval of their mother, and Daisy and Ellen are no different. In their case, however, the constant judgment and bullying had the effect of sending the two young women on different trajectories. Ellen internalized her mother's standards and values and became the reflection that Mom was looking for, even going so far as to raise her own daughter in the image of her mother. As for Ellen, she went the other way, rebelling against her mother's tyranny and, in the process, paying the price. After all, as far as her mother was concerned, Daisy was still a part of her and owed her obedience. From Daisy's point of view, her mother's demands were impossible to fulfill in as much as they were not who Daisy was, or even wanted to be.

Worrying about everything

Dr Matt had assigned a 30-minute walk after she had completed the letter. She popped on her earbuds so she could listen to a playlist Ashley had shared with her, then slipped on her workout clothes and headed out the door, feeling fatigued and light at the same time. (Note: Felicia's Playlist is on our website. ) Observers would have witnessed a young woman speed-walking toward the nearby park, but Felicia fairly floated in her mind, carried by the celebratory thought of, I did it! Before she knew it, she found herself in a jog, which she held for about 3 minutes. Lighter, that's what it feels like. She visualized herself as strong and lean and recalled herself as El Viento, the name she'd been given as a youngster, when she ran like The Wind. It is something terrible that the narcissist is doing purposefully to their victim. That said, how the victim deals with that abuse is the key to whether the narcissist is set back on their heels or the victim goes on suffering and eventually develops narcissistic abuse syndrome. Later on, we'll give you tips on getting out of one of these abusive relationships. In the meantime, however, let's look at what not to do: Never Try to Appease the Narcissist. It didn't work for Neville Chamberlain, with Hitler in 1938, and it won't work for you because all you are doing is empowering the narcissist, who will see you as weak and will use the opportunity to exert more control. Forget Pleading with the Narcissist. Pleading just shows you as weak and the narcissist is likely to react with disdain and contempt. If You Withdraw, Keep it Short. You may need to temporarily withdraw to give you some breathing space in which to collect yourself, to get your thoughts and emotions in line, but it is not a long-term solution. To achieve this, Mark Antony will speak last, after Brutus, already knowing what he said in his defense. When Marc Anthony begins his speech, he, contrary to the expectations of the public, agrees with the general opinion and calls Brutus a worthy husband.

It is only after this that Mark Anthony resorts to rhetoric--when everyone is sure that he thinks the same way they do. In his speech, he uses clever tricks that convince listeners that this is still a murder and the criminal must be convicted. Begin it immediately with the charges, no one would listen to him, but Mark Antony was smart enough, to bring everything to a successful moment. Today Mark Antony would have had a black belt in aikido, and Shakespeare, who wrote this play, would have become a successful politician. Let's summarize. You do not need to compromise your own principles when practicing mental aikido. You do not need to lie. Rapport must be built on honesty. The 30-minute walk turned into a 45-minute workout as she approached her cottage-like rented home. She saw her cousin's car next to hers and glanced inside it, expecting to see Heather at the wheel, but no one was there. Then she remembered that her cousin had probably entered through the back door, and the horrifying thought flashed in her mind: The notearticle! Heather might read it! Felicia's hand shook as she inserted her key into the front doorknob, and her worst fear was realized when she charged inside, immediately focused on the table, and saw that the notearticle--the letter! --was open. Heather was weeping over it. Felicia's dog, Bella, seemed torn between whether to greet her newly returned mistress or maintain vigil over the broken-hearted woman at the table. Felicia lurched toward her cousin, swooned, and fainted, just missing the sharp corner of the end table in the living room. She awoke to Bella licking her still-sweaty arms. Fighting with Facts Doesn't Work. Facts don't mean anything to your narcissistic abuser.

Their sole interest is in justifying themselves and their position. It doesn't matter how right you are, how solid your evidence is, the facts you present will be twisted, denied or ignored and you'll be left fatigued, damaged, and victimized even more. Don't Explain and Don't Defend. Like fighting, it's pointless. If you go beyond a simple denial of the narcissist's ridiculous claims against you, you just give them fodder to dig into you even further. It's as if you've given them permission to judge you. Don't Look for Understanding. You might think that if the narcissist could only understand where you are coming from, things would be different. Finding a point of contact is usually easy, but there are exceptions. For example, public debates require political opponents to exchange views, not compromise. If your views on one subject are radically different, then I advise you to find something in which you nevertheless agree. If this is not possible, then use the technique that I have already described: If I were you, I would have thought the same thing. Moreover, it will be true because if you were a different person, you would have thought differently. If someone bursts into the room, punches the table, and shouts: It's disgusting! --you have no choice but to get up from the chair, hit the table with a cup or fist and exclaim, I agree! I understand you! If I were you, I would also say: this is disgusting! At this moment you are copying the body language, tone of voice and rhythm of the enemy. Emotions and feelings are the conscious experience that one is most aware of when dealing with stressful events: anxiety, fear, shame, anger, worry, and doubt, to name but a few.

All too often, victims of trauma have difficulty experiencing these strong feelings without triggering unhealthy avoidance and/or escape behavior referred to in the previous pieces of writing of this article. A significant part of recovery from trauma comes from improvement in recognizing and controlling these feeling-experiences. Hunter turning up drunk to Group showed how poorly he was dealing with the depression caused by the miserable state of his life. He wanted relief so much that he showed up to his therapy group in a highly intoxicated state of incoherent pain. Hunter was misery, personified. Jake discovered that the source of his anxiety could be the expectation that he will be imperfect, causing him to withdraw from major aspects of his life. Part of the reason Felicia has been stuck in the trauma process could be that she has not been in touch with angry feelings toward the perpetrator of her abuse. While cognitive distortions and erroneous beliefs may have a large part in causing us to have certain emotions, the emotional experiences must be dealt with. If you were dealing with a normal individual then you'd have a point, but you're not. Your narcissist doesn't actually want to understand you. They just want to win and maintain a position of superiority. Like explaining yourself and fighting with facts, you are just opening yourself up to more pain and manipulation. Remember, the more information about yourself you give the narcissist, the more ammunition they have to use against you. Don't Criticize or Threaten the Narcissist. You have to remember that narcissistic abusers are, for all their bluster and arrogance, very fragile and insecure. They are the perfect examples of people who can dish it out but can't take it. Criticism and threats will just escalate things by making them angry, vindictive, even violent. Don't Get Caught Up in Denial or Rationalization. Then you need to gradually lower your voice. You can sit on the edge of the table and say: But you know, I think we can solve this issue.

You begin to bring the interlocutor to the idea that you want to impress on him, at the same time laying the foundations for the successful completion of the conflict. In addition, it is a great way to calm an angry opponent. The angry person is looking for resistance, an enemy to whom he can turn all his (or her) anger, pin to the wall and continue to get angry. A way to calm him down has been shown to you. Your goal, as in establishing rapport, is to make the other believe that you understand him, that you think the same thing--that is you are the same as he. Only then will he want to hear your suggestions. Just seeing that you share common views, he will want to listen to you, and then consider that rapport between you is already established. If I were you, I would have thought the same thing--what could be simpler ? Trauma victims often do this poorly, which is why skills training in emotional management includes labeling the feelings truthfully, devising ways to get through such experiences without adding great damage to oneself and one's life, and communicating carefully with others about all of these steps. Writing about fear, anger, loss, and shame can be the first step in this process. Such writing often results in what psychologists call desensitization (ie becoming more used to those feelings). Beth's first article, Courage in Patience, written as a therapeutic assignment, is an example of this. Other exposure treatments attempt to gradually increase the amount of contact victims have with scary and/or anger-inducing events. Finally, communication techniques like The Four Steps of Careful but Complete Communication, suggested to Ben, are usually needed to let others know how we feel. It should be clear that all of these therapeutic processes take place in the group sessions that Dr Matt conducts. In addition, the core individual treatment, obtained in programs like Cognitive Processing Therapy, includes heavy doses of all these methods. In the interest of providing an idea of what treatment can be like, we provide fictionalized accounts of the group members you are getting to know. We can't describe in detail the many methods of treatment used to address the problems in living that trauma victims get tangled up in, but we can present brief references to methods used by professional therapists. Many victims end up denying the abuse. They rationalize it, excuse it, minimize it, and while it might offer the victim a way to cope with the abuse, it does nothing to stop it.

Stinking thinking

By having a direct effect on the body's response, we simultaneously have an indirect effect on our emotional reactions. Want to be fun--pretend that everything is just super, smile, chat and laugh as if you have never had so much fun! Another important tool for establishing rapport is to agree with the interlocutor in everything. I know it sounds trite, but let's take a closer look at it. Try to find something in the words of the interlocutor, with which you absolutely agree. This is especially important if you want to convince him later, make him change his mind. An attempt to explain to the interlocutor what his mistake is will meet strong resistance and rejection of your ideas. Instead of listening to you, he will begin to defend himself. The distraught woman sighed heavily and stared without seeing anything. What had Dr Matt said over and over again in the session? Oh, yes: Anger floats on a sea of fear. She shook her head and flipped to the inside cover of her notearticle, where she'd taped the doctor's instructions: Write as fast as you can. Don't worry about spelling or grammar. You are not going to show this to anyone. Felicia had read the second item repeatedly since the moment she'd agreed to this assignment. Felicia laid her head on the table and repeatedly whispered to herself, It's okay. You don't have to show it to anyone. Also, it creates a paper trail that you can use against them should the need arise. Just the Facts.

When you do communicate with your narcissistic ex, keep emotions out of it. Discuss things only in relation to the facts and the established orders and agreements, and nothing else. It may sound cold, but if you allow the narcissist to get you off track and begin feeding off your emotions, things can easily get out of hand. Create a Call Schedule for Child Visitation. Only allow the narcissistic parent to call during set times while you have the children. It's likely that the narcissist parent will demand to speak with the children during their time with you. If they call at an unscheduled time, do not answer. They can leave a message. Rapport is needed to convince people of the following: you understand them, you are just like them, and you share their views. Of course, it is not worthwhile to sacrifice your own principles and views. You only need to find in the words of the interlocutor something with which you can agree. For example, you and your interlocutor have nothing in common, except for the love of boats or fishing. Or both of you are playing the same computer game. Even if it seems to you that the other person does not understand anything at all, you can always mentally put yourself in his place and imagine how you would feel if you did not understand anything from the conversation. Even if you have to communicate with Pol Pot (who destroyed millions of representatives of his own people), you can still imagine yourself in his place. The phrase If I were you in this situation, I would have thought the same thing can work wonders. In fact, you only say one thing: if you were your interlocutor for yourself, you would behave the same. The same principle is used in Japanese aikido combat. She'd nearly freaked out when Dr Matt first proposed that she write a letter to Tio Tomas. No way was she going to contact that man.

Felicia was beginning to trust Dr Matt more and more, but NO ONE could force her to have dealings with that jerk uncle of hers. Felicia listened to Dr Matt's voice again in her mind: Writing this letter is solely for your benefit in clarifying feelings. Then he'd added the prompts beneath the instructions regarding spelling/grammar and whose eyes would see the letter. You took me to your house before we went to the track to practice. You said you had to help me warm up my muscles and you reached into my running shorts, sliding your hand between my legs. I tried to back off, but you grabbed my back and wouldn't let me go. I thought about screaming; I opened my mouth but nothing came out. If the children have cell phones, make sure you monitor them to enforce the schedule. Request a Parent Coordinator. In high-conflict cases, the judge can appoint a parent coordinator who will handle scheduling and communications. This will reduce a lot of the stress and anxiety you and your child experience. Ask for a Guardian ad Litem for your child. This person will work in the best interest of your child and serve as an advocate and support while you are working out the custody and visitation issues. Have your lawyer request one from the judge. Keep the Kids Out of It. This is between you and your ex, so keep it that way. Never use your child as a messenger, and never use them as a sounding board. With the words You are mistaken, you break the mental connection between you and your opponent, and then your struggle becomes unproductive. Instead of standing up opposite, you stand by and say: I think the same thing.

Now you can use all the energy not to overcome the resistance of the enemy, but to achieve your goal. Instead of being an obstacle, you take the lead role. And your opponent absolutely does not mind, because you no longer need to find out who is right and who is to blame. You together, between you installed rapport. Between you a complete understanding. In aikido, this means not getting in the way of the energy of another person, but using it for your own purposes to defeat the enemy. To a greater or lesser extent, our reality consists of what we ourselves think is true. Therefore, by influencing the ideas about the reality of another person, we change it in the most direct way. I shut my eyes and hoped you would stop--but you didn't. And when you pulled my shorts off, I ran to the bathroom in only my underwear. I could hear the guys who were doing that work on your house and I had nowhere to go, being undressed like that. I was terrified, and I just waited in the bathroom for what felt like forever. I started to lose my breath from crying. I heard my mom's voice when she came to pick me up, and I finally went to the door and pushed it open a bit to see you had gone. Then I went into the bedroom where you did that to me and I found my shorts. I pulled them on and pretended that I had just come back from using the bathroom. Mom asked me why I was still so sweaty and you told her that I had a hard workout. Thirty minutes later, Felicia looked at the four articles she had written and couldn't believe she had that much inside of her. That is what friends and therapists are for. Don't go digging for information, either.

If your child wants to talk about something, they will. Get Therapy for Your Child. Your child knows more about what is going on than you think, and they are more affected by it than you imagine. Moreover, they are also likely to be subjected to the same narcissistic behavior that led to the break-up in the first place. As they mature, your child will naturally become more independent, which will lead to more and more issues with the narcissist. You need to minimize the fallout from all of that by making sure that therapy for your child is in the parenting agreement and that they go. Abuse is the fault and responsibility of the abuser. There is no question about that. To politicians, this truth has long been known. It is better to first accept the views of those in opposition, and only then propose changes. In the play of Shakespeare Julius Caesar Brutus, the closest ally of Caesar is accused of killing the dictator, and accused, with good reason. And you, Brutus--remember? But at Caesar's funeral, Brutus delivers a fiery speech and convinces people that he has done a great service with his act. Brutus loved Caesar very much, but he saw that his madness would lead the people to poverty and misery. The murder was the only way to prevent this. Well, how can you not believe Brutus? The people are ready to believe and forgive, but behind the scenes, Mark Antony is plotting new intrigues. He, too, must give a speech at the funeral, and more than anything, he wants Brutus to be convicted of murder. Her breathing was shallow, but she recognized it as she took a deep sigh. She relaxed her shoulders and got up from the table.

Sunday, 31 May 2020

Never taking time for yourself

But I do know that you will need to set a firm limit with them if they don't agree to open up a therapeutic dialogue. Ben sniffed and asked, Set a limit? What's that? Like an ultimatum? Ashley chimed in. Oh, I remember, like the four steps of being blunt? Patty asked, That's on the back of your business card, isn't it? Dr Matt stood and strode to his desk, where he retrieved a stack of business cards. Even worse, what had once been said behind closed doors goes public, usually in front of family and friends. This pattern of growing hostility and verbal abuse continues to grow until it becomes the primary way the narcissist interacts with their partner. Cruelty becomes the norm, fighting escalates, and physical abuse becomes a real possibility. Anyone can suffer from narcissistic abuse syndrome. Women, men, adults, children, young, old, it doesn't matter. Nor does it matter how smart you are, how grounded you think you are, or how well you think you can read people. Why? Because narcissists are masters of deceit and manipulation, anyone can be made a victim and suffer abuse at their hands. Those that do are likely to develop some level of Narcissistic Abuse Syndrome. In any abusive relationship, it's not unusual for the victim to suffer fear and anxiety over the relationship, what the narcissist is doing, and what they could have done differently. They also contain declarative information, causal information about how components of a system interact and procedural information about how to operate the system to achieve the desired outcome. Mental model structures are typically organized as a network with information bits that are interlinked representing interconnected concepts of a larger system.

The structure of the mental model provides the foundation for behavior to be established. Mental models are predictive in nature and create simulations that arise from the underlying knowledge and information contained in the structure of the model. These simulations give possible outcomes based on possible scenarios. Organized knowledge is easier to recall and put to use hence mental models also facilitate recollection of information. Construction of a mental model normally occurs in stages, Identifying the components of a system. Inter grating the components of the system based on their interactions Testing and running the model. It is. `The Four Steps of Careful but Complete Communication' are printed on the back of my cards because it's so important and so often needed, I got tired of writing it down. He grinned at that bit of lazy efficiency. Ben snapped, Well, what is it? The doctor handed a card to each person as he explained, It's one of the communication skills often needed in life, but--since communication is so difficult--especially when one is in the midst of high emotion. I think it may be better to use a `fill-in-the blank' structure rather than trying to remember in real time, under the gun, all you want to say. So, there are four steps in formulating each message. First, say what you think or feel; second, say what is happening to make you feel that way; third, say what you think the other person thinks or feels; The victim might start believing that they are the cause of the trouble and even suffer from mood swings and a deterioration of their self-image and self-esteem, all the while being unable to break away. These are the hallmarks of narcissistic abuse syndrome, which is a type of post-traumatic stress disorder.

Intense Loneliness. Sure, the narcissist is there with you, in the house, in your bed, but you still feel utterly alone. They are with you, and yet you feel abandoned and completely disconnected. They don't seem interested in spending time with you, learning about you, or even making you feel safe. When you interact with the narcissist, you feel frustrated, as if they don't hear you, and they simply want to use you as a tool. The narcissist will go out of their way to make you feel like a loser, no matter how successful you've been, how intelligent, kind, creative, even good-looking you are. It doesn't matter what it is, the narcissist will pointedly pay no attention, and if they do, their response is a mockery. It's a very effective tactic, and victims are sometimes too broken to carry on and lose everything from families to careers to finances and homes. Mental model structure development has been found to differ based on the level of experience. In highly experienced individuals, there is a high level of linkages within the networks that make up the mental model. Subnetworks are also common in highly experienced individuals' mental models. The level of abstraction in these mental models is also higher with associations and a concept is based on abstract information rather than surface features as is the case in amateurs or individuals with little experience. In individuals with more experience, sub-groupings and interactions are based on frequently used procedures. When it comes to language, the associations are based on the meaning of words in the context of the domain of the system. The structure in amateur individuals' mental models differs from the structure in the models of experts or highly experienced individuals. The models in this group have a lower level of abstraction with concepts being based on surface characteristics rather than abstract concepts. The mental models in amateurs have fewer interlinkages between concepts and the networks within the model are not as dense as those in the mental models of experts. The language used is also a key difference between the structures of the two types of mental models. and fourth, say what you want the other person to do. Dr Matt returned to his seat.

Sometimes, `filling in the blanks' can be the structure that makes it easy to remember: I feel ______ when you do ______. I realize you must feel ______. But what I want from you is ______. Ben fidgeted with the business card. Wow. That would be intense with my parents. Dr Matt nodded. It's hard to express to you how powerful such direct communication is, Ben. You find that your relationship with the narcissist completely consumes your world from the barrage of calls, texts, and emails, the displays of excessive jealousy, the wedge placed between you and your friends and family, even demands placed on how you dress, style your hair or eat. As if that's not bad enough, you find yourself in a constant state of anxiety, fearful of accidentally setting off the narcissist. This leads to constant second-guessing, but you never really know what will do it, and that leaves you drowning in feelings of hopelessness. You no longer stand up for what you believe in. Instead, you've stopped doing things that made you feel good, like donating time and money to worthy causes, or you've started to tolerate or even take part in activities that would have once been deal-breakers for you. Why? Because this is what your narcissist wants, and you want to show them how much you love them, hoping that it will turn them around and they'll treat you the way they did when you were first together. If you have to turn away from things and people who are important to you in order to prove your love to someone, that's abusive. Like bullying, name-calling isn't confined to the schoolyard. Narcissists use it to demean you and undermine your self-esteem. In amateurs, the meaning of words is based on natural language rather than the language of the system in question. In these mental models, the concepts are not arranged in a procedural format unlike in the mental models of people with more experience.

The principle of accumulating mental models is instrumental in improving our thinking capacity and our ability to see situations from multiple perspectives. When we rely on a fixed number or set of mental models, we in effect limit our range of thought, our capacity to generate new ideas and the aptitude for finding solutions to problems. To improve ourselves we must first change the way we think and how our thoughts influence our actions. This is only possible if we are willing to expand our set of mental models. By considering mental models as tools that we can use to facilitate effective thinking we can comprehend that the more mental models we have at our disposal, the better the decisions we are able to make and to best utilize our knowledge when interacting with different systems. Our attitudes, values, beliefs, actions, and behavior are shaped by our thoughts. To achieve something, we must first conceive it in our minds before we can bring it into reality. The importance of mental models can thus not be stressed enough. It's intense. Many times, others find the directness too blunt, and it can backfire. Ben folded the business card in half and folded it again. He looked scared. Backfire. What do you mean? Well, the initial reaction when such a blunt message is sent is to perceive it as an attack on the person to whom it is said, but if your goal is to set a limit, that's one way to do it. Would you like to practice it? Well, yeah, but what do I say? Ben leaned forward. It will erupt during fights, but the narcissist will other times as well and claim they were only joking or that you are being too sensitive. These names are used intentionally to hurt you and undermine your confidence.

Saturday, 30 May 2020

Too little blood glucose

Perhaps you've heard the story about the little swallow . It was covering one eye with its wing and crying bitterly. An owl flew by and asked, Little bird, what's wrong? The swallow pulled away its wing and showed a gash where once it had an eye. Please. Get some help. Patty grimaced and tried to return the card. I'm not to that point, but thanks. I don't go to other people for. that. I don't talk to-- Listen! Angela's eyes filled with tears as she took Patty's hands in her own, folded her fingers over the card, and whispered, I care about you. I know you're in pain. The blue light from the screens will trick your brain into thinking it's daytime and will suppress your melatonin production. In addition, most people find email and news agitating - taking you out of the relaxed state required for sleep. If you have to use electronic devices in the evening, keep the screens dim. Hold the screens as far away from your face as possible. As of this writing, it is unclear whether using a yellow tint (like the iPhone's Night Shift) will improve sleep. While it was initially thought that converting the blue light to yellow would be beneficial, the current state of research now makes this uncertain.

DO get at least seven to nine hours of sleep per night. Remember, you want a minimum of seven hours of sleep, which means you need to be in bed (with your eyes closed) more than seven hours. I would shoot for at least eight hours. And, if you think you're one of those people who only need five hours of sleep, you're wrong. Would you rather be working against your gift, or helping yourself stay balanced so that you can really explore the possibilities of what it means to have such an exciting ability? The long and short of it is that if you are studying this material, you might already know you have empathic tendencies and are looking for ways to cope with the reality of how it can feel if you are not in control of your power. If you are not sure whether you are an empath or not, you can review the list of sensitivities and gifts and decide what is resonating with you the most. There are so many ways that our lives can be influenced by other people, places, and circumstances, for everyone, not just the empath; and if you are the empath, then you know how hard it can feel when you are hyper-aware of everyone else's experience and not just your own. The gifts of being an empath are so supportive, heartfelt, and creative, and you can do some pretty amazing things in the world with how you align with your abilities. If you have any ideas about how you are going to make it work for you, then you are already off to a good start. There can be some major obstacles and roadblocks to achieving that level of self-confidence and overcoming any fears you may have about that process. Consider just how valuable your skills are to the world and the people in your life. Career and Profession this is called bio-directionality. You can use your imagination to develop your focus and power of concentration and you can use focussed thought to encourage and facilitate moments of creative insight. When you have one of these creative moments, perhaps an idea or realisation (sometimes referred to as an `aha' moment), your brain and autonomic nervous system shut down just for a fraction of a second. All `power' is concentrated into the insight. Isn't that amazing? It also means that your increased ability to focus through doing the work in this article will enable you to have many more of these creative moments.

For experienced meditators, it becomes a state they can call up at will. Our imagination isn't centred in one part of the brain. In fact, when we use our `imagination', over 40 different areas of the brain are used. New ideas come from new connections, when neurons fire and wire together. But for Navy SEALs, self-talk can mean the difference between passing or failing. Welcome to the Pool Comp. The Pool Competency Test is all about staying calm and positive when everything around you threatens danger. Imagine this: you're underwater, decked out in scuba gear. Everything is normal, in the surreal kind of way the world feels underwater. Suddenly, the equipment feeding oxygen to your mouth is ripped out, and the tube filling oxygen to that mouthpiece is tied in a knot. If we went into this exercise cold-turkey, without any training, our hearts would be racing. This is a matter of life and death. You have to get your equipment back under control. But your hands are shaking, your mind is racing, and your heart rate won't relax for an instant. Now I understand, hooted the owl, blinking, You're crying because the crow pecked out your eye! No, replied the bird sadly, I'm not crying because the crow pecked out my eye; I'm crying because I let him. Is there someone who is pecking away at your vision? Is there anyone who tries to blind you from seeing your dreams? Hey, it's easy to let influences shape our lives, especially negative influences.

It's easy to let associations determine our direction, to let persuasion overwhelm us, to let tides overtake us, and to let pressures mold us. The question is, is this what you want? Are you becoming, achieving, and acquiring what you want, or are you letting others steal your dreams? If after analyzing your present relationships you determine that you have some weeds in your garden of association, there are a couple of things you can do. But there is a way out, if you'll take it. She turned and walked briskly away, not giving Patty a chance to argue. Two days later, after Kyle left to meet a friend for a movie, Patty attempted suicide by mixing anti-anxiety medication with alcohol. Kyle returned home to find his mother passed out on her bed, a suicide note on her nightstand. He called 911, praying silently that his mom would not die, too. Patty survived. She was hospitalized until stable, released to Jolie's care, and promised her anguished sons that she would seek help. Periodically throughout this article, we provide an entire piece of writing that does nothing but describe a session of Dr Matt's Thursday Night Group. After all, the article is titled Trauma Recovery: Sessions With Dr Matt. DON'T work or watch TV in your bed . You want to associate your bed with sleep and relaxation, not with stressful activities like work. If you need to work in the evening, go to a desk or your kitchen table. DO go to sleep and wake up at the same time every day. The goal is to train your brain when it's time to go to bed. Avoid staying up late on weekends.

Bedtime is bedtime. Your brain will thank you. DON'T have a lot of light in your bedroom. The darker the room, the easier it will be for your brain to up-cycle melatonin production. Bringing your gift into the work that you do can be a huge benefit to being an empath. When you use your natural ability as a healer, mentor, advisor, and counselor, you can really make a lot of headway in life, offering your specialized skills to a wide range of people and situations. If you have an interest in doing healing work as a profession, then there are numerous ways you can actualize that in your life. You might not consider being a lawyer or an environmentalist a healing profession. However, the empath is always looking for a good cause, and you may discover that some people in these professions decided to do this work because of their devotion to healing the earth, or to seeking justice where justice is needed, to heal the system. Any of these jobs and so many more not on this list can be of great benefit to the empath, and not just to the people that they serve. If you are working in a profession that is connected to your special gifts and skills, then you are more likely to give yourself a greater life balance to achieve the mental wellness, confidence, and power that you desire to do good work and enjoy your ability. You don't have to be a doctor to be good at having empathic skills. You could simply be a volunteer at a Women's shelter and help people in need of support on the weekends. You can also follow your own nose and determine which profession suits your personality the best. If we asked you to close your eyes and think of a pink elephant, you would be able to see one, although your brain cannot draw upon a memory of you having seen such a wonderful beast. That is because your brain can take familiar pieces and assemble them in a different way. There will be an ensemble of neurons that would collectively call up the image of an elephant and others that would be used to visualise the colour pink. You can even add in that this elephant is wearing a crown and waltzing. The really clever part of this mental synthesis is that each ensemble of neurons will take a different amount of time to fire, but the brain can balance this out so that there is a unified conduction time and the elephant does not have to wait to go pink or begin to dance. Think of it as being like an orchestra finding new sounds and combinations, new ways of expressing a thought or story.

Not knowing how to boost your metabolism

CPAP is a medical device that requires a prescription. Your sleep specialist will pick the right machine for you and adjust the settings to meet your needs. There are a variety of mask sizes and shapes, and your sleep doctor will find the right one for your face and breathing style. Some empaths will start to feel something like insecurity or self-doubt out of nowhere and will believe that it is their own feeling, rather than what they perceive from another person. It can be a very challenging experience to really understand who is feeling what when you are an empath and discovering your true gifts is part of what this article aims to teach so that you can get out of the emotional traps and fears, and begin to live more gracefully and self-confidently with the power of empathy. There are so many influential ways that you can use empathy to help you achieve greater happiness and confidence in your own life. You can also utilize these gifts to help others and be more available to giving people what they want and need without taking it on as if it is your own problem. When you have the mental skills and emotional mastery to support your abilities as an empath, you can really enjoy and appreciate all of the ways that it will be a good influence in your life and the lives of others. Here is a list of some of the gifts of empathy: Natural healers - empaths are often likely to choose careers that allow them to use their gifts for the benefit of many people Very creative - will find a lot of joy and pleasure in living an artistic and creative life, even choosing it as a profession Sensitive to the needs of others - can be incredibly giving and helpful in a variety of ways, especially with friends and loved ones, but also with strangers Non-judgmental attitude, making the empath an excellent diplomat and mediator through a variety of life experiences '2 Creativity is sometimes called the bridge to innovation. In order to create something new, an inventor has to be able first to imagine it, whether this is a piece of kitchen equipment or an equation. Most scientists and mathematicians say that imagination lies at the heart of their work. Similarly, a concert pianist practises in his mind; he also composes there. Now, with our understanding of neuroscience, we know why imagination rules the world.

We know that it drives not only social change but all change; it is imagination that is enabling you to successfully reframe your thoughts and unlock your potential. In the first half of this article, we'll reinforce some of the concepts and techniques from previous articles that have used imagination. The second half of the article will be a comprehensive set of exercises to sharpen your creative skills and to use imagination to bring about further positive change. If you want to clean up your finances, maybe your mental toughness training for the week is making dinner every night instead of succumbing to ordering takeout. If your goal is to be more knowledgeable this year, commit to reading a article a week for the rest of the year. If you want to work on sharpening your self-discipline skills, work your schedule so you can fit in a good habit, like meditating or jogging. If you've been really bad lately about being present in your relationships, maybe your first step is deciding to leave your phone somewhere out of sight and spend half an hour with your spouse and your kids. Notice how none of these tasks seem to be mountains you couldn't climb. The task itself doesn't have to be gigantic. The hard part is doing it consistently, every day, working at it even when you don't want to. There will be days you don't feel like cooking. Grit is grown by doing it when the motivation is at an all-time low, just because you know you should. When creating these goals, keep in mind where your roadblocks will be. But it goes even further. If you're around people who think it's all right to cheat a little, you, too, might be persuaded to cut a few corners. People can really nudge you off course until one day, ten years down the road, you wake up asking yourself, How did I get here anyway? And that's not a very happy moment . It's so easy to dismiss this question of influence. The guy says, I live here, but it doesn't matter.

I'm around these people, but they don't bother me. Well, he's wrong. Everything matters! This is a good phrase to remember: EVERYTHING MATTERS. She jumped when she found Angela, her neighboring teacher, immediately behind her. Angela, who had recently emerged from a painful divorce and an ensuing mental meltdown, gave Patty a closed-mouth smile as she held out a business card. Patty took the card without thinking, read aloud the heading: Clinical Psychologist, and looked at Angela questioningly. Angela shrugged. What can I tell you, Patty? This man--Scott Matthews--everyone calls him Dr Matt--pulled me out of myself and helped me figure out why the sun still comes up each day. I had assumed that it flamed out with my marriage, you know? . I've been watching you, and I think you need help. I'm worried about you. It may take a bit of trial and error to make it comfortable, but it will soon feel as natural as breathing. I should note, there are tons of sleep disorders besides OSA, including insomnia, narcolepsy, sleepwalking, teeth grinding, and restless leg syndrome. I chose to focus exclusively on OSA in this piece of writing because it is common, causes excessive daytime sleepiness, and is easily treatable. If you're concerned that you have any kind of sleep disturbance, please go see your doctor or sleep specialist. Let's end this piece of writing with a summary of what you should do to improve your shut-eye.

These best-practices, otherwise known as sleep hygiene, are scientifically established ways you can enjoy the restorative sleep you deserve. Most of these techniques are easy to follow, and I hope you'll put them to use tonight. Share them with your friends and family and you'll be their hero. DON'T check your email, read the news, use your cell phone, or laptop before bed. Open-minded to all different kinds of people, cultures, attitudes, and beliefs Excellent at spending time alone- several empaths have noted enjoying solitude while other people seem to have difficulty being on their own Talented advisors, counselors, mentors, allies, and friends Gifted at spotting a lie and seeking out the truth Talented at hearing the core of an issue, not just what is reported by someone Talented at seeing and hearing how someone else is feeling and understanding how to handle that circumstance or emotion Aptitude for more heightened awareness, sometimes even clairvoyance or psychic abilities Incredibly strong senses, allowing for a much more pleasurable and exciting life Powerful connection to the emotions and thoughts of others which can be helpful when treated well, in romantic partnerships, friendships, and business relationships As you can see, there are a lot of wonderful ways being an empath can represent in your life and if you are already experiencing some of these gifts, then you will need to be able to ask yourself what matters the most to you in your life. Imagination is a private individual activity. Creativity is the outward expression of imagination. Having said that, imagination is also what we use to immerse ourselves in the social world. We spend a huge amount of time using our imagination to read the emotions of other people. It is what engages us in any story or situation. Have a look at a TV drama or movie and see how much of the camera time is given to close-ups.

Whether in real life or if we are being an `audience' (which actually demands a substantial creative output), we want to share in the emotions of others and to do this we use our imagination. As we said in the Foreword, scientists used to believe that there was very little connection between the imagination and the prefrontal cortex, the higher thinking brain. Now it is known that the links are incredibly strong. As with most connections, it works in both directions; Make sure the tasks you create to accomplish your goals are built into your routine to become a habit. When you don't want to or don't feel like showing up, accomplishing your task out of habit will save you. Remember that being mentally tough isn't about what feels good. It's about sticking to the schedule regardless of how you feel about it. It's about being consistent with your habits and your routine to get to your goal. That's what's going to set you apart. Every day when you complete your task, be sure to celebrate your progress and your wins. Every step you take is getting you closer to the person you want to be. Your brain is a powerful machine, and it's constantly working. It might not seem like a big deal when you mutter, Oh, that was stupid, to yourself after making a mistake, or, Yikes, that could've gone better, when you bomb a presentation. This article is different from many others because it deals with reality, not wishful thinking. In fact, one of the main purposes of this article is to get you to say: The days of kidding myself are over. I really want to know what I have become and what I am becoming. I want to know what my strengths and weaknesses are, what has power over me, what's influencing me, what I've allowed to affect my life. So take a look and then another. Everything worthwhile deserves a second look, especially the power of influence.