The Power Of Flexible Thinking + How To Put It Into Practice

Flex (a mindset that I live by) is based on the concept of psychological flexibility, defined as "the ability to stay in touch with the present moment regardless of unpleasant thoughts, feelings and body sensations while choosing behavior based on" the situation and personal values. ”I first heard of psychological flexibility through the work of clinical psychologist Steven C. Hayes, Ph.D., co-developer of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), a highly effective psychotherapy for anxiety and depression .

Hayes’ teachings make us bend over with our negative emotions, not deny them. I loved the idea of ​​bending thoughts like not well enough, people hate me, or I'm a fat, ugly loser instead of forcing myself to "grit" them through.

I got tired (and sick) from trying to be gritty the whole time. I pressured myself to bounce back while I was walking wounded. The resilience training gives me terrible flashbacks in boot camp courses, completely out of breath, frizzy hair, red face, burning muscles and the teacher yells, "Keep running!" You're so careful about being the only one in the class wanting to stop and crawl that despite the feeling of collapsing, you keep going.

Urgh, my worst.

Pre-Flex has been like a boot camp my whole life; my brain screamed, ignore the pain! Do not give up! And not me. But ignoring the pain doesn't make it go away. It only makes it worse. I repeat that for my stiff upper lip readers: Ignoring pain doesn't make it go away. It makes it worse.

We need a new strategy and an exit from the boot camp life. The mentality of pushing ourselves to the limit because "that's how it's done" makes us chronically ill and unhappy. There is a better alternative: living life flexibly!

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