Category: sleepless

Tennis in your brain

We have gotten our intelligence for better and for worse. It warns us for threats and dangers beforehand, even before they are noticeable and thus gives us time to seek solutions and measures to handle them. But sometimes our scary brain warns us and create problems and worries when no real threats or problems exist. These thoughts are just discomforting. 

In spite of that we often start to seek solutions – logical explanations, counter evidence, measures or just comfort – with our logical brain. Sometimes this ends up in a tennis match in our heads, where the scary brain serves discomforting thoughts and the logical brain returns comforting thoughts in a never ending rumination or brooding.

Most people worry over minutiae, trivial episodes in their lives or over unsolvable problems, suffer from bad conscience, guilt or doubt. We often try to rid ourselves from the discomforting thoughts but the rumination and worry just continues.

It is possible to put an end to the tennis match in the brain.

To stop your unnecessary uneasiness you had better consider this;

  • Distraction might temporarily relieve the worry, but it is no cure. Instead it might prolong rumination.
  • Eagerness to quit broodings in a wrong way intensifies it.

Advises:

  • Refrain from comforting when afflicted by problems that cannot be solved.
  • Do not seek answers to questions that have no answers.
  • Do not try to understand things that are incomprehensible.
  • If you accept the presence of your discomforting and intrusive thoughts – you eventually kill them.

Learn how to do that:

Quit ruminating and brooding

If you consider to buy the book – please buy this green och black one. Not the white one (by AuhtorHouse) since they keep my royalty to themseves, because of a self-imposed rule.

Stop worrying – the new model

When you google “stop worry” you find sites that redommend 5 steps, 9 steps or even 13 steps in order to stop your worry.

These steps sometimes are helpful for you to get rid of the worry instantly, but the worry unfortunately comes back. And that seems to be inevitable.

This new model for how to stop worrying and ruminating is aiming to train your brain to refrain from producing discomforting and worrying thoughts – to extinguish the habit of thinking discomforting and upsetting thoughts. This is a more permanent way to deal with the worry.

The new model was first presented in 2007 in the book “Quit ruminating and brooding“. It has now been tested in two very large scale studies (in press) with 140 subjects in the first study. In the second study (with 340 subjects) the new model has proven  to be even more effective than the standard treaments for Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) with their different stressmanagement methods.

What is so special about this new model?

It does indeed not strive to relieve your uneasiness immediatly, but to free you in a longer run and permanently.

It aims to train your warning or scary brain to refrain from seeking threats, dangers and producing discomforting thoughts when you are feeling low, guilty or are anxious and aroused.

The book “Quit ruminating and brooding” has become very popular in Sweden and the nordic countries (small countries in Scandinavia) and has sold more than 29000 copies to date. The book is easy to understand to anyone and it is appreciated by the common man as well as by psychologists and students. Why not try it? You might regret and worry about it if you do not.

The book is available in English since 2015

Get the book

  • Distraction might temporarily relieve the worry, but it is no cure. Instead it might prolong it.
  • Eagerness to quit worry in a wrong way intensifies it.
  • Refrain from comforting when afflicted by problems that cannot be solved.
  • Do not seek answers to questions that have no answers.
  • Do not try to understand things that are incomprehensible.
  • If you accept the presence of your discomforting and intrusive thoughts – you eventually kill them.
  • If you really want to learn how to quit worrying  Read the book.

If you consider buying the book – please buy the green och black version. AuthorHouse (the white version) retain my legal royalty because of a self-imposed rule.

Ruminating is the “tennis” of the brain – the internal argumentation

Ruminations can be likened to a game of tennis, where one side hits a frightening thought, and the calming side returns it with a comforting thought. Each time the “ball” comes over to the other side, it can be returned. The game can go on forever. Since we are intelligent beings, we keep finding new frightening aspects, or we get new irritating ideas, and find new comforting thoughts.

Ruminating is an internal dialogue, or discussion or debate.

Our ability to see new dangers leads to a never ending shift in the contents of ruminations, even if it is about the same subject or field.

Look at this example of how rumination can function. Let the tennis game begin.

Discomforting thoughts                   Comforting thoughts

  • What if the interest rate increases?
                                                        The interest rate has not increased for a 
                                                         year.
  • Sooner or later it is bound to increase. It has always been up and down. If it increases, our living costs will hit the ceiling and we will have to move.
                                                           No expert has talked about increased                                                                     interest rates recently.
  • In the thirties, the stock market crashed and interest rates increased overnight without people knowing about it ahead of time, because if they did, they would have sold their stock shares before the crash.
                                                            Economists are more competent now, so                                                              that could  not happen in such a surprising                                                           way these days.
  • But the monetary system is also more complicated now and, hence, more vulnerable. And if the interest rate increased by 2%, we might not be able to afford food. Then we will be forced to sell our house.                                                                                                We will be alright, one way or another.                                                                 We will get plenty of money for our house                                                             if we sold it now.
  • Then where would we move?
                                                                  There are plenty of apartments in                                                                           Olsberga.
  • In that case, the children will have to change schools, and they will lose all their friends.
                                                                  There are probably many teachers that                                                                  are better  out there, and the children                                                                    would not have as far to school.
  • They might get bullied.
                                                                    Why would they? They have always                                                                       been well liked and popular.

 

  • There are a lot of problems in Olsberga and my children might end up in a bad crowd and start smoking and drinking.
                                                                    Why would they do that all of a                                                                               sudden? That has not happened before.
  • If they do not make new friends, they might start hanging out with kids who do drugs.
                                                                   And so on.
  • And so on.

Ruminations can go on for a long time. There are really no boundaries for how long they might go on. Hereby, the intelligence and imagination of human beings become a burden.

This is an exerpt from the book Quit Ruminating and Brooding by Olle Wadström. Comments and discussions are encouraged.

The book is available in two similar versions. Please choose the green and black version. AuthorHouse (the white version) keep my legally earned royalty to themselves, because of a self-imposed rule.

Rumination is a behavior stream

cropped-Bild-23.jpgRuminating is not really one behavior, but rather a stream of many behaviors. It is a stream of thoughts. The rumination-stream does not consist of the same thoughts repeating themselves, but rather it consists of two types of thoughts. Two types which each have their own different function.

Behavior analysis is the understanding of the function of different behaviors. One behavior can have different functions, depending on different situations. Different behaviors may have the same function, even though they differ starkly. In order to understand a behavior’s function or purpose, it is essential to see it its context. If you do not understand the function of a behavior, you might treat it improperly. Thoughts are also behaviors, which can have different functions.

Our feelings are affected by external and internal factors. We might get upset, angry, and frightened by things that we hear and see, but also by things that we think. In the same manner, we can be calmed by things we see, hear, and think.

Thoughts in ruminations have two different functions. One kind of thoughts leads to anxiety, insecurity, or discomfort and these thoughts function as frighteners or “triggers”. The other type of thoughts functions as calmers, reassurers, or comforters, also called safety-behaviors.

Thoughts that lead to concern, frighten, lead to uneasiness, anxiety or discomfort in general will henceforth be referred to as “discomforting thoughts”. Thoughts that function as safety-behaviors that are used to rid uncertainty, insecurity, concerns, feelings of discomfort and doubt, will henceforth be referred to as “comforting thoughts”.

This is an exerpt from the book Quit Ruminating and Brooding by Olle Wadstrom. Comments and discussions are encouraged.

What are rumination and brooding

Ruminating is thought-behaviors – cognitive behaviors. The typical rumination is a type of internal struggle, an internal discussion where a person in his or her mind considers the possibilities to affect, alter, predict, understand, and prepare for something. Sometimes the problem being ruminated upon is not solvable through either thoughts or actions.

 

It is possible to control and affect thoughts, something that might be hard to believe for someone who suffers from a lot of ruminating. It feels as if you cannot quit ruminating, even if you really want to. Ruminating has a tendency to return, time and again. Yet the fact remains that we can control both our external actions (the motor behavior) as well as our thoughts (the cognitive behavior). The difference between controlling our actions and controlling our thought can be described accordingly.

We can decide between raising our right arm or not moving it at all. We can decide between speaking or being silent. Motor behaviors are under our absolute control, with the exceptions of reflexes and tics.

When it comes to thinking, the situation is slightly different. We can decide on thinking about a certain thing, but we cannot decide on not thinking at all. However hard we try, we will always be thinking about something. Thus, we cannot restrain ourselves from thinking in the same manner that we can restrain ourselves from moving. This is one of the problems with ruminating. We think during all of our waking time. It is also hard to not think about a certain thing, since we are constantly thinking, and it is easy to skip from one thought to another.

It has been proven difficult – indeed impossible – to decide on not thinking on, for example “a blue elephant”. Indeed, as soon as you try to not think about the blue elephant, a blue elephant appears. This is because when you try to keep track of what to not think about, you automatically think about it.

This is an exerpt from the book Quit Ruminating and Brooding by Olle Wadstrom. Comments and discussions are encouraged.

The book is available in two similar versions. Please choose the green and black version. AuthorHouse (the white version) keep my legally earned royalty to themselves, because of a self-imposed rule.

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