One of the books I read this summer is Feeling Good-the new mood therapy written by David D. Burns, M.D.
Here I like to share the notes I kept while reading the book. Why did I name this post a Depression Therapy? If you are someone who are sensitive to others' attitudes, critics or actions. Then from time to time, you may suffer from depression. And I hope these notes will help you deal with your problems to a certain degree.
The theme of Cognitive Therapy(認知治療的理論核心): Thoughts create feelings.
Cognition(認知): the way you are thinking about things at any moment. These thoughts will automatically have a huge impact on how you feel.想法影响感觉感受
Our cognitions may be affected by our childhood experiences, genes, and hormones, the controllalbes or the uncontrollables. Fortunately, as matured adults, we can change the way we think of things and change basic values and beliefs.或许是生活环境、成长背景、基因、贺尔蒙的分泌问题影响了我们对事情的看法，不论是先天後天造成的，身为一个成熟的人，是可以经由改变想法，進而改变心情、生活与健康。
Realize the Facts:
1.All moods are created by cognitions（thoughts）.
2.When feeling depressed, thoughts are dominated by a pervasive negativity, then you perceive not only self but the entire world in dark, gloomy terms.
Bad things happened in the past may make you look into the future with emptiness.
3.Distorted thinking (mental slippage) is major cause of suffering.
Part of being human means getting upset from time to time.
What you think will affect how you feel, so Change the way you think of things will help control your mood. We must understand what is happening (look into the real meaning behind the scene, realize the real problem) before we feel it.
1.All-or-Nothing Thinking: See things as black or white
3.Mental filter: pick out a negative detail, dwell on it exclusively. When depressed, one tends to filter out anything positive and conclude that everything is negative. Also called selective abstraction.
4.Disqualifying the positive: throw cold water to the good things that happened; denying being loved, cared, and welcomed by others.
5.Jumping to conclusions: “Mind reading” without checking the facts, ex: non-returned phone calls. The fortune teller error: I’m going to …, I’ll never …., That is my fate to be… . Respond to the imagined negative reactions by withdrawal or counterattack.
Self defeating behavior pattern may act as a self-fulfilling prophecy and set up a negative interaction in a relationship when none actually exists.
6.Magnification and Minimization
Magnify errors and mistakes, while minimize strength
7.Emotional Reasoning : I feel …, therefore, I am following my mood to do things
8.Too Many Shoulds and shouldn’ts
They(you/she/he)should or shouldn’t…他应该…才对，不该…才对。太多的该与不该。
9.Labeling and Mislabeling
This is an extreme form of overgeneralization. When labeling others, you inevitably (invariably) generate hostility.
10.Personalization: Put the world on one’s shoulder; fill in the seat where you don’t have to take.
The solutions are summarized as follows (解決方法):
1.People do not live by our rules.不是每个人都照我们的规约生活的。人类会犯错的，对、错也没有绝对性的 Fewer shoulds and shoulden’ts will make our lives easier.
2.Why behave in ways that not in our best self-interest.
3.No one in this world has the power to put you down but yourself.
4.Don’t let others errors or mistakes upset you. 换句话说,不要因为别人的过错或失误而惩罚自己，如果因此而不悦，那你就赋予对方太大的影响力，来影响自己的情绪与健康了。
5.Don’t expect fair treatment from others or expect others to send expected feedback to us. Ex. Don’t be upset by unanswered phone calls. That doesn’t mean you are not welcome.
6.As we learn to expect less, we get more.
7.I am the one who decide whether I should be happy or not. My mood should not be controlled by others’ action or attitudes.
The basic law of physics (行为反作用力):
For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction against it. You push harder, it bounces back harder.
Ex: When someone tries to push us or boss around, we will tighten up and resist, in order to maintain our equilibrium and self-esteem. The same applies to kids’ reaction to moms’ pushy hands.
By realizing this law, I suggest that:
1.If feeling pushed, you think of the essence of the facts first, if that is in your best interest, and that is in your plan, you should do it not because someone’s pushing you, but because you want to do it. If that is something you don’t like to do and not to your best interest, then don’t listen to others? You are the one who decide what to do. We all don’t like pushy hands.
2.Try not to be the "unwelcome" pushers. Respect others and others may learn to respect us.
Dealing with critics (comments):
Many times we feel bad when facing negative critics.
Here is the way to deal with them:
1.If Wrong Comments, Ignore it. Don’t waste time letting wrong comments upset you.
2.If right comment, we must know that we, as human beings, are not perfect in nature. Try to find ways to improve and correct it.
Dealing with fights (or arguments)
1.Ask the person to find out what he means ( avoid being judgmental or labeling or defensive while asking questions).
2.Attempt to see the world through the opponent’s eyes. Slip in his shoes.
3.Transform an attack-defense interaction into one of collaboration and mutual respect. Don’t fight back, as we know the law of physics, but find a way to agree with the critics (there must be some points he mentions are agreeable). This way you will defuse his anger.
4.Disarm the opponent, Admit that we make mistakes. You are not cheating. People do make mistakes sometimes or many times.
5.Feedback and negotiation. Find way to agree with critics. Being defensive does no good to the communication.
~Best Wishes to All~
THE ALCHEMY OF ART