The Power of Belief

The Power of Belief

The Power of Belief

In this short 10 minute video The Power of Belief Eduardo Briceno explains how failure is the way to the greatest success. He explains that the way we understand our intelligence and abilities deeply impacts our success. Based on social science research and real life examples, Eduardo Briceño articulates how mindset, or the understanding of intelligence and abilities, is key. When students or adults see their abilities as fixed, whether they think they’re naturals or just not built for a certain domain, they avoid challenge and lose interest when things get hard. Conversely, when they understand that abilities are developed, they more readily adopt learning-oriented behaviors such as deliberate practice and grit that enable them to achieve their goals. But this belief is itself malleable, and there are clear actions we can all take to establish a growth mindset and enable success for our children, our peers and ourselves. 

TEDx

 

About TEDx

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized. (Subject to certain rules and regulations.)

Curated by Liz McCaughey

Curation

At aMIndset we value good content for our readers. In that spirit, we will often curate or excerpt content from top quality sources on the web.The very internet itself was created on the foundation of linking, sharing, and recommending good content from other sources on the web.

Curation means finding good, well-written, and highly relevant material for our readers. By choosing content from your site, we are giving it our vote of approval. This not only means that we excerpt your content, but we also give it our highest recommendation, and we encourage our readers to view your content on your own website.
Our curation is designed to send our readers to your site so you get new visitors exposed to your top quality content. We curated your content because it was outstanding in some way.

Full details of aMindset’s Curation Policy can be found HERE

Online Therapy – Are there any Benefits?

Online Therapy – Are there any Benefits?

 

Online therapy is shown in research to be just as effective as in-person therapy. (Ref 1) But it gets a bad rap, as it is still quite a new modality compared to traditional counselling sessions, usually face-to-face. However, technology influences every aspect of life in this modern age, and online therapy is now easily accessible. It is not just for use during a pandemic or lockdowns; it is here to stay, so it is worth giving it a go, no matter your bias. How can you say you don’t like it if you don’t try it? 

Online therapy comes in various shapes and sizes, and it can be done via video, audio or text, making it easily accessible and more affordable. Technology has revolutionised our ability to get therapy no matter the geography or the time of day. If you just want to chat with someone or work on trauma and more profound issues, there will be a therapist available at the tip of your fingers. The benefits are many:

  • Accessible and comfortable, it can be done from your home
  • Time convenient for your schedule
  • Private
  • Cost-effective
  • Allows for social distancing if needed.

However, most important of all, the question has to be asked. Is it as good as face to face therapy? YES! It seems it is. Several studies have found that online CBT results in very effective treatment and even that doing CBT online is more effective than in-person therapy. (Ref 2). Online therapy enables you to have a wider choice of therapists. As the therapeutic alliance (how well you and your therapist ‘click’) is an essential part of a good therapy session, online therapy lets you check out therapists and find someone you trust. 

But it is a personal choice that only you can make. But, significantly, so much modern research proves that online therapy is ‘just what the doctor ordered’ for a healthier, happier you. 

AMindset offers online low-cost affordable therapy – if you want to know more about how we can support you go Here

Liz McCaughey

Find out more about Liz Here

Other Articles:

Online Psychotherapy vs Traditional

(Ref 1)

Meredith S. Pescatello, Tyler R. Pedersen & Scott A. Baldwin (2021) Treatment engagement and effectiveness of an internet-delivered cognitive behavioral therapy program at a university counseling center, Psychotherapy Research, 31:5, 656-667, DOI:

  1. 10.1080/10503307.2020.1822559

 

(Ref 2)

Luo, Sanger, N., Singhal, N., Pattrick, K., Shams, I., Shahid, H., Hoang, P., Schmidt, J., Lee, J., Haber, S., Puckering, M., Buchanan, N., Lee, P., Ng, K., Sun, S., Kheyson, S., Chung, D. C.-Y., Sanger, S., Thabane, L., & Samaan, Z. (2020). A comparison of electronically-delivered and face to face cognitive behavioural therapies in depressive disorders: A systematic review and meta-analysis. EClinicalMedicine, 24, 100442–100442. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.eclinm.2020.100442

How To Fight Your Fear and the Inner Demon

How To Fight Your Fear and the Inner Demon

 How To Fight Your Fear

There is good in every human being, no matter how bad the nightly news reports demonstrate.  There is good in you and me. Although at times we may doubt that to be true. We should stop thinking about how to fight your fear and inner demons, but detach ourselves from any vulnerabilities.

If we were so good:

  • Why don’t we do more for charity?
  • How could we have acted the way we did with a friend or partner?
  • Why don’t we give more time and money to help people?
  • How could we have been so cruel to another person?
  • Why do we always act like a coward and run away from discomfort?
  • Why do we justify our vicious actions or words?
  • How can we live with so much self-deception?
  • Why aren’t we crusading for betterment for the world instead of shying away from anything that we might find unsettling.

Our inner demon (sometimes referred to as ‘the lower ego’ or ‘ego’) tells us we are not a good person, We are constantly exposed to this inner chatter and it makes us afraid that maybe we really are a bad person.  Perhaps the Catholics have it right: “We are guilty until proven more guilty”. We cannot escape our badness so forget about forgiving yourself and anyone else, just work hard to free yourself from your own guilt. And the best way to stop feeling guilty, outside of the confessional, is to detach yourself from the feelings that might make you vulnerable.

 

How to fight your fear: Understanding Yourself

It seems that to get by we try and harden ourselves against compassion or those soft spots that put us at risk of feeling bad. We try to stop ourselves feeling too much, so we put up barriers that generate prejudices, judgements and selfishness. These barriers hide the genuine caring part of our natures, we can all pretend to be kind, but sometimes, wittingly or unwittingly,  we are doing the opposite. The barriers we put up are entirely false and out of place. Fortunately, they only hide the real, caring person, they do not destroy the compassionate part of our persona. Our genuine nature is always there, just veiled by delusion and our own lower ego which promotes separation, selfishness and survival of itself (the false you) above all else.

It’s a simple fact that whenever something happens that we don’t like, we rush to mentally escape it. This can take the form of a drink, exercise, verbal criticism, housework,  justifying our actions or thoughts, writing or even some simple shopping therapy.  Like most of humanity, we have developed a myriad of distractions to stop ourselves from feeling uncomfortable.

Simple feelings of mild anxiety, restlessness, guilt are immediately pushed aside as we find a distraction to make us think in another direction. And the emotionally painful ‘biggies’ of betrayal, unworthiness, loneliness have us sprinting in the opposite direction, or buying shares in a brewery.

How to fight your fear by dealing with it directly something that we willingly do, as that might result in us coming face to face with ‘Despicable Me’.

Although we may try to believe we are a good person, the way we constantly display our ‘horrible’ personal traits has us, backed-up by the ego impulses, thinking the opposite. We harden ourselves to ourselves and everyone else which results in barriers being put in place that attempt to keep everyone at a distance.

The person that stares back at you each day in the mirror becomes a survivor who will not be afraid. This means hiding the vulnerable and caring nature which could potentially expose you, thus leaving your emotions defenceless. And if this thoughtful, kind-hearted you does escape, there is a momentary lapse of defences as you lose control and have a break-down.

This loss of control feels uncomfortable, during the emotional wailing and for some time afterwards. The ego sends the signal, ‘this is something to be avoided at all costs.’ And in an attempt to constantly avoid a repeat of the discomfort or pain you become even more frightened. The classic double-bind of a Catch 22 situation. The more you try and stop the pain or fear, the worse it gets.

As a result, we try to think ‘tough’ and put a hard shell or barrier around our emotions. This is particularly prevalent when you have opened up to someone who then causes hurt. Despite your best endeavours, this person is unconsciously on your ‘revenge’ to-do list. Until you are honest and face up to what you are really thinking, you will not know if this is true. Unfortunately the barriers not only block people from getting to you, they block you from being honest with yourself.

Defending ourselves against any possible discomfort but especially against pain which can be physical or emotional, is a natural defence mechanism of the psyche. Rather than face whatever makes us frightened, we fear it and the defensive barriers are erected.

But these false barriers as ways of defending the psyche only work in the short term, they are not sustainable. The fear will return, because even with the defensive barriers in position, we remain afraid. We want to have certainty in our life and try to do everything right in the vain hope we will find that safe place to hide and be happy for the remainder of our lives. But life isn’t that kind, the uncertainties and sorrows of it are a reality we all have to face, which results in our being afraid of living.

Eventually many people, paralysed by their own fears, which are fears that are often just a part of their imagination, stop living. Life to them becomes just an existence with no joy or hope.

There is no-one alive who can avoid sorrow, pain or fear. If you don’t believe me, have a think about dying, does it worry you at all? The reason I mention death is because it is the one thing that will happen to every living thing on this planet.

Fear is a part of life and has to be faced, erecting defensive barriers will not work in the long term so why not try to do things differently?

This, of course is easier said than done. Our habitual way of thinking and doing is hard to break especially as your lower ego is not interested in you changing at all. Indeed it is the great deceiver and although you may believe you are in control of your life, you are being duped by your ego.

The ego wants to avoid pain at all cost. As most of you have lived with the ego in charge of your thinking and doing, it takes effort, pain and hard work to wrestle back the control.  You will only be able to take back that control when you choose to find a long-term more permanent solution to your fears. This involves choosing to face and experience the fears and the pain, instead of running away.

It may seem a bad idea to choose to feel the pain and the intensity of that fearful feeling, but once you have done it, you have a chance of softening or moulding the emotion, even letting it go. If you do not allow yourself to do this and instead suppress the feelings, you are more likely to break, make rash decisions even cause pain to someone you love, under the weight of these repressed emotions.

Thinking tough to the extent that you suppress the feelings of pain, anxiety or discomfort makes you a more brittle and delusional person.  This type of thinking feeds the lower ego who in an attempt to protect itself wants you to think you are separate from other people, correct in your thinking and invulnerable. This ego part of you likes you to be isolated and it feeds you with delusional thoughts.

I am sure you have all experienced this in your life when looking back you have thought:

  • What the hell was I thinking?
  • How did I allow that to happen?

Those past moments where when the ego was firmly in charge. You were its puppet acting out its selfish, delusional madness.  If you want to live a balanced, truthful, less fearful and guilty life, you have to face your fears and in so doing, challenge the ego.  You have to go to those places that make you frightened or uncomfortable. You have to accept that there is suffering in the world and although you cannot fix it all, you can attempt to change yourself so you can be a better, stronger and more balanced person.

We all want to be happy, we all want to be free from fear and pain but that will only happen when we accept that they are a part of a normal life. Life will always have its ups and down and every day we are subject to new and unexpected experiences. Life’s situations, people you meet and your own reactions will be unpredictable. It’s time to accept the feeling of fear and life’s unforeseeable adventures as just a part of living. Stop trying to control the impossible.

There is no certainty in life and being uncertain makes us more afraid. Accept this makes you feel uncertain and insecure and then look at the bigger picture of each incident and see if you can see the lesson that is being presented to you. Usually there is a  valuable lesson that you need to learn contained within each scenario. This may cause you more fear and pain in the beginning but as you face it, you fix it. Every time you face up to a fear and overcome it, you become emotionally stronger. A coward remains a coward by running away instead of facing the music. Eventually, when you are able to handle the good and the bad days with equal assurance you can proclaim yourself a warrior.

When you stand up to the bully, he tends to run away, but if you run away he tends to run after you. The emotion of fear is like a bully, when you face it, it loses its strength and potency. That is the time you are firmly taking back control of your life from your internal bully (the ego) and a more balanced and happier ‘you’ will emerge.

Once you are able to do that for yourself, you can look to the bigger picture and see what you can do for others. Even that person who has caused you the most pain and you wished to repay tenfold.   You can genuinely help others once you stop feeling the need to defend yourself. in this instance, helping others is not a distraction but an act of kindness coming from a person who has experienced pain and fear but who has learnt how to manage it through bravery, truthfulness, wisdom and strength.

As you help others you learn more and help yourself and over time you will notice that something is missing from your life.  Something you have carried around with you for aeons.  And that something is the emotion of fear.

You may think that allowing vulnerability and compassion into your life will be dangerous and fearful, but the opposite happens. Externally showing the real inner you, as opposed to the false ego, will bring you more peace because compassion is what makes you human. This is the best way on how to fight your fear and inner demons in life.

We all have fear and it comes in different forms and at the most unexpected times. Facing each fear, one at a time, with no barriers is the way forward. Instead, allow truth and vulnerability to be present plus compassion towards ourselves and others. This  will bring about a liberating and positive change in how we experience life.

It is what you do in the present that will shape the remainder of your life.

So look to yourself and see how you are thinking and reacting:

  • In fear or in peace
  • Defended or vulnerable
  • Harmful or Harmless

How to fight your fear by facing your fears and being truthful to yourself is a process that will have to be repeated throughout your life. It is a mental process that will become second nature after a while.

“If you want to know what will happen to you in the future, look at what your mind is doing now.”

The Dalai Lama

Empathy: The Power of Connection

Empathy: The Power of Connection

Empathy: The Power of Connection

In recent years, the process of ‘restorative justice’ has been used more and more frequently as a way of dealing with crime. In this article ‘Empathy: The Power of Connection’ Steve Taylor Ph.D says that as a part of the process, offenders are brought face to face with the victims of their crimes, to hear how they have suffered as a result. The aim of this encounter is to bring healing, for both victim and offender. The victim transcends their rage with some understanding and forgiveness towards the offender, and the offender empathises with the victim, becoming aware of the real meaning of their crimes. This process changes lives. Victims feel free of the weight of hatred and are able to move on; offenders have a wider sense of perspective, and are less likely to re-offend. Sometimes offenders don’t meet their specific victims, but just the victims of similar crimes. But this still leads to a new awareness, and new patterns of behaviour.

This highlights the amazing power of Empathy: The Power of Connection. To a large extent, all crime and all cruelty are the result of a lack of empathy. It’s a lack of empathy which makes someone capable of attacking or oppressing other people. A lack of empathy for another tribe or country makes warfare and conflict possible. A lack of empathy towards other ethnic groups, social classes or castes makes oppression and inequality possible.

What is Empathy?

According to the book, Empathy: The Power of Connection, empathy is the ability to ‘feel with’ another person, to identity with them and sense what they’re experiencing. It’s sometimes seen as the ability to ‘read’ other people’s emotions, or the ability to imagine what they’re feeling, by ‘putting yourself in their shoes.’ In other words, empathy is seen as a cognitive ability, along the same lines as the ability to imagine future scenarios or to solve problems based on previous experience. But in my view, empathy is more than this. It’s the ability to make a psychic and emotional connection with another person, to actually enter into their mind-space. When we experience real empathy or compassion, our identity actually merges with another person’s. The separateness between you and the other person fades away. Your ‘self-boundary’ melts away, so that in a sense – or to an extent – you become them.

If you experience this state of connection with another person, then it’s impossible to treat them badly, except unintentionally. You recoil from their experience of suffering in the same way that you recoil from your own suffering. In fact, you feel a strong desire to relieve their suffering and aid their development.

Empathy has powerful psychological benefits for us too. Research shows that people who are more empathic feel more satisfied with their lives, and have better relationships. Some scientists used to belief that human beings are naturally selfish and individualistic, but more and more research is showing that empathy – not selfishness – is ‘hard-wired’ into us. Animals often show empathy towards one another, even to members of different species, and this manifests itself in random acts of kindness. As Lynne McTaggart – author of The Bond – puts it, ‘Animals often partner up with members of unrelated species…There are even instances of an animal from one species adopting those of another.’ And within their own species, animals often share food to make sure that weaker members of their group are fed, even when they have to sacrifice their own food.

Are Women more Empathic?

Studies have suggested that women are generally more empathic than men. For example, studies have shown that women are significantly better at ‘reading’ people’s emotions purely from looking at their eyes. Other research has shown that women’s friendships tend to based on mutual help and problem sharing, whereas men usually develop friendships based on shared interests, such as sports and hobbies. Men and women have also been shown to have different speaking styles. Women’s conversations usually last longer, because of their use of more ‘back channel support’, such as nodding, smiling and other gestures. If they disagree, they tend to express their opinion indirectly rather than making a statement, helping to avoid confrontation. On the other hand, men tend to more blunt and opinionated. They use more imperatives and tend to ‘talk over’ more. As the psychologist Simon Baron-Cohen puts it, ‘men spend more time using language to demonstrate their knowledge, skill and status.’ This makes sense: after all, the vast majority of ‘man’s inhumanity’ throughout history really has been man’s. Almost all wars have been orchestrated and fought by men, and most social oppression has been inflicted by high status men, seeking to protect and increase their power and wealth.

This also makes sense in terms of women’s role as mothers. Surely their nurturing role encourages empathy, because of the need for a strong emotional connection to children. At the very least, you could say that this emotional connection would have made it more difficult for them to lose the ability to empathise.

Empathy with Nature

Empathy can spread beyond other humans, to other living beings and to nature itself. Many of the world’s tribal peoples respect nature because they sense that it’s alive, and because they feel connected to it. They sense that all natural things – not just animals but plants, stones and the whole Earth itself – are not just objects but beings, who are part of the same web of creation as them. They empathise with plants, animals and the Earth, and so are reluctant to damage or destroy them. As the great Native American philosopher Luther Standing Bear wrote, for the Lakota Indians, ‘Kinship with all creatures of the earth, sky, and water was a real and active principle. In the animal and bird world there existed a brotherly feeling that kept the Lakota safe among them.’ As a result, wrote Luther Standing Bear, anticipating the modern animal rights movement, ‘The animals had rights – the right of a man’s protection, the right to live, the right to multiply, the right to freedom, and the right to man’s indebtedness – and in recognition of these rights the Lakota never enslaved an animal, and spared all life that was not needed for food and clothing.’

This attitude brought a sense of responsibility. Many indigenous peoples saw – and still see – themselves as the caretakers of nature, with a responsibility to preserve harmony. As Chief Edward Moody of the Nuxalk Nation says, ‘We must protect the forests for our children, grandchildren and children yet to be born. We must protect the forests for those who can’t speak for themselves such as the birds, animals, fish and trees.’

To a large extent, our environmental destruction is a manifestation of our lack of empathy for nature, and the Earth. Our strongly developed ego means that we experience a sense of ‘otherness’ to nature, that we can’t sense its aliveness, and so don’t feel any qualms about exploiting and abusing it.

Healing through Empathy

Actually, according to the book ‘Empathy: The Power of Connection, just as the lack of empathy makes cruelty and oppression possible, the presence of empathy heals conflict. The wider empathy stretches – from victims to offenders, from one ethnic group to another, from nation to nation and religion to religion – the less brutal and more harmonious a place the world will become.

And perhaps most importantly, as Restorative Justice shows, to some degree empathy can be nurtured. When people are brought together in a neutral context, with an open, trusting attitude, empathy naturally establishes itself. Distinctions of ethnicity, religion and other superficial ‘identity badges’ begin to fade away, as does the sense of grievance and rage derived from past events. The same could be said of nature too: when human beings spend time in natural surroundings, relaxing into its stillness and space, a bond naturally establishes itself.

And it’s this bond which is surely our true nature.  The book, Empathy: The Power of Connection, shows that the concept of separateness is an illusion. Empathy is simply the experience of our true, the exchange of feeling through the channel of shared consciousness which unites not just all human beings, but all living and non-living things.

Empathy: The Power of Connection

Think of someone you love, and be aware of the warm feeling that wells up inside you. Hold on to that warm feeling, and let it spread throughout your body, including to any parts of you body where you feel discomfort. Let it flow into your mind too, so that you feel empathy and compassion to your own thoughts, even the negative ones. Think of all the people around you, in the rooms or buildings close to you, and imagine that warm glow of compassion leaving your body and spreading to them. Think of all the people in your city, in the streets and buildings, and expand the warm feeling to them too. Thinking of all the people in this country, across the towns and countryside, and expand the feeling to them too. Then expand it further, to all the people on this planet, the millions of people in all the different countries. Feel the glow of compassion spreading from your being to the whole world, and into the space above you, rising up into the sky and the whole universe.

Cultivating Empathy

  • Use your imagination to picture how the world looks through other people’s eyes. Think about how other people’s predicaments make them feel, and how their experiences mould their perceptions.
  • When you speak to other people, give them your full attention. Don’t think about other things, look into the distance or look at your i-phone. Giving people your full attention shows that your respect them, and establishes a strong connection, which enables empathy to flow between you.
  • Before you condemn another person for behaving badly, think about the reasons for their behaviour. Is it because of bad experiences they’ve had in the past, or because of personality traits that they have no control over?
  • Be altruistic and kind to others. Make sure that your life contains an element of service, where you part the needs of others before your own e.g. caring for the sick or elderly, charity or voluntary work. Altruism and service help us to transcend separateness, and to connect with others, creating a follow of empathy.

Curated by Liz McCaughey

Curation

At aMIndset we value good content for our readers. In that spirit, we will often curate or excerpt content from top quality sources on the web.The very internet itself was created on the foundation of linking, sharing, and recommending good content from other sources on the web.

Curation means finding good, well-written, and highly relevant material for our readers. By choosing content from your site, we are giving it our vote of approval. This not only means that we excerpt your content, but we also give it our highest recommendation, and we encourage our readers to view your content on your own website. Our curation is designed to send our readers to your site so you get new visitors exposed to your top quality content. We curated your content because it was outstanding in some way.

Full details of aMindset’s Curation Policy can be found HERE.

How To Believe in Yourself

How To Believe in Yourself

How to Believe in Yourself

It is sometimes really hard to believe in yourself when everything is upside down and falling apart. You don’t seem to be able to get ahead and it looks like your efforts are making no difference.  And indeed people look at you as if you have already failed in life and what is worse you start to believe them. Pulling yourself out of this all too familiar scenario can be tough, but it is possible as this short video explains.  How to believe in Yourself.

Jim Cathcart thought he would never make a difference. An average student from a working class family with no athletic or special skills, he expected an unremarkable existence. But one radio message in 1972 changed the direction of his life & authored his belief in his potential. Today, he’s a Hall of Fame Speaker, and has authored 16 books. While changing himself, Jim also discovered how to help others believe in themselves, too. In this 9 minute video Jim Cathcart explains How To Believe in Yourself and you can do that by first Knowing Thyself and working from there plus then applying what he suggests.

TEDx Talks

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)

Curated by Liz McCaughey

Curation

At aMIndset we value good content for our readers. In that spirit, we will often curate or excerpt content from top quality sources on the web.The very internet itself was created on the foundation of linking, sharing, and recommending good content from other sources on the web.

Curation means finding good, well-written, and highly relevant material for our readers. By choosing content from your site, we are giving it our vote of approval. This not only means that we excerpt your content, but we also give it our highest recommendation, and we encourage our readers to view your content on your own website.
Our curation is designed to send our readers to your site so you get new visitors exposed to your top quality content. We curated your content because it was outstanding in some way.

Full details of aMindset’s Curation Policy can be found HERE