Mind
Coronavirus: positive thinking, is it possible?

Coronavirus: positive thinking, is it possible?

Each of us has within himself all the skills necessary to overcome any situation in his life, but not everyone is aware of it. Positive thinking is a companion who constantly guides us and provides us with daily reinforcement, making us think: “I can do it”.

 

Advertising message In these days, when we are forced to stay at home, many of us will have thought that whenever we face an obstacle, our way of thinking can lead us to the imminent hope that this can be tackled and overcome. This happens in every area of ​​life: family, relationship, work and friendship. It is this positive thinking of ours that helps us learn and manage our fears and / or emotions. Each of us has within himself all the skills necessary to overcome any situation in his life, but not everyone is aware of it. Some people have beliefs oriented towards “so much is useless”, “so much I will not be able anyway”, “so much things will go wrong”. Let’s try to understand in detail what we mean. Thinking positively does not mean blindly believing that things are going well, it does not mean closing your eyes to challenges or difficulties, it does not mean living your life as if negative and unpleasant situations did not exist. Positive thinking is a companion who constantly guides us in our life and provides us with daily reinforcement, making us think: “I can do it” (Delle Fave, 2010). This does not mean that a person can do it at any cost. It is a thought that guides us towards our goals, promoting their achievement and allowing us to overcome difficulties. And even when we are faced with a failure, thanks to positive thinking we could say: “what have I learned from this situation?”, “What can I do different next time to be successful?”.

Our way of thinking affects our behavior more than you can imagine. Many indicate how much the management of thoughts can be the key through which you can control your emotions and achieve the goals you set in life (Beck, 2008). We suffer more thinking that something can have negative effects and this suffering becomes, therefore, the push to seek sufficient courage to face the frightening situation. For example, a person with fear of needles will suffer much more from the anxiety related to his phobia than from the small tingling that creates the sting. The power of predictive thinking lies in self-fulfilling prophecy: by dint of negatively thinking, these thoughts become real behaviors. In practice, according to the definition of the American sociologist Robert K. Merton (1948), a supposition or prophecy which, by the mere fact of having been pronounced, makes the presumed, expected or predicted event come true, thus confirming its truthfulness. It has nothing to do with magical thinking, which instead consists in establishing an irrational relationship between our thoughts and the events of our life. Our thoughts correctly influence our conduct (Beck, 2008). For example, if I started a new project and thought, right away, that it will fail, my motivation, energy and mental clarity to seek solutions, ideas and resources would not be very effective. Or, if I believed that my partner is unfaithful, my trust, my jealousy and my high level of emotional dependence would certainly spoil the relationship. This is what occurs when a prophecy comes true and falls more or less consciously on everyone’s behavior through the Pygmalion Effect referring to the power that an individual’s expectations have over others (parents, children, teachers, pupils, employees, etc. …). In particular, it is a form of psychological suggestion: people tend to conform to the image that other individuals have of them, be it a positive or a negative image. To give a practical example, just mention the experiment conducted by Robert Rosenthal himself (1968) and his team, who subjected some children from an elementary school to an intelligence test. After the test, some children were randomly selected whose teachers were made to believe that they had above average intelligence. The suggestion was such that, when Rosenthal went to the same elementary school the following year, he had to find that, in fact, the performance of the selected children had greatly improved and this only because the teachers had positively influenced them with their attitude, unaware that it was all related to suggestion. Given these arguments, it is important in educational, family and even work contexts to tell children, pupils or employees that they believe in their potential and in the realization of their objectives if they are to be oriented towards success. the performance of the selected children was much improved and this only because the teachers had positively influenced them with their attitude, unaware that it was all related to suggestion. Given these arguments, it is important in educational, family and even work contexts to tell children, pupils or employees that they believe in their potential and in the realization of their objectives if they are to direct these social actors towards success. the performance of the selected children was much improved and this only because the teachers had positively influenced them with their attitude, unaware that it was all related to suggestion. Given these arguments, it is important in educational, family and even work contexts to tell children, pupils or employees that they believe in their potential and in the realization of their objectives if they are to be oriented towards success.

Cognitive and cognitive-behavioral psychotherapy is a treatment indicated to deal with psychopathological discomforts, such as anxiety, panic attacks and phobias. This type of intervention is based on the assumption that there is a close relationship between thoughts, emotions and behaviors. In fact, emotional problems are influenced by the actions and experiences of experience. The treatment plan is initiated by a psychotherapist and aims to provide the patient with the tools to know how to manage anxiety and to change negative beliefs. In this case, the patient will be asked to practice the visualization exercise (Beck, 1971): imagine ourselves as we approach the idea of ​​putting in place a new challenge, such as an exam, a public speech, a football game , an appointment, a new job and think that this can be successful. To apply this technique, it is necessary to follow a psychotherapist who can train us in this type of thoughts and in the subsequent phase of visualization. It is useful to follow some practical advice: imagine vividly what we would like to achieve, pay attention to detail, recreate the sensations that we would feel in the event of a possible success, such as the positive consequences, the praise of others, personal satisfaction. The important thing is “do not forget to always imagine yourself with a view to success”. Don’t think about what could happen, but think about what we want to happen. it is necessary to follow a psychotherapist who can train us in this type of thoughts and in the subsequent visualization phase. It is useful to follow some practical advice: imagine vividly what we would like to achieve, pay attention to detail, recreate the sensations that we would feel in the event of a possible success, such as the positive consequences, the praise of others, personal satisfaction. The important thing is “do not forget to always imagine yourself with a view to success”. Don’t think about what could happen, but think about what we want to happen. it is necessary to follow a psychotherapist who can train us in this type of thoughts and in the subsequent visualization phase. It is useful to follow some practical advice: imagine vividly what we would like to achieve, pay attention to detail, recreate the sensations that we would feel in the event of a possible success, such as the positive consequences, the praise of others, personal satisfaction. The important thing is “do not forget to always imagine yourself with a view to success”. Don’t think about what could happen, but think about what we want to happen. like the positive consequences, the praises of others, personal satisfaction. The important thing is “do not forget to always imagine yourself with a view to success”. Don’t think about what could happen, but think about what we want to happen. like the positive consequences, the praises of others, personal satisfaction. The important thing is “do not forget to always imagine yourself with a view to success”. Don’t think about what could happen, but think about what we want to happen.

Advertising message In our daily life, it often happens to be assaulted by thousands of “automatic” thoughts that we are not aware of, but we realize it when we experience the emotional effects in terms of worry, sadness, anxiety, fear and so on. via (Beck, 2013). Emotions that upset our actions and that prevent us from fully enjoying the present moment. Let’s take an example in current affairs: a family does not go out shopping, due to the probable spread of the “bad virus” and the possibility that they are all infected immediately. The thoughts that start chasing each other with dominoes will be “I don’t have milk for breakfast”, “If I tried to go out to the supermarket, for sure there will be many people like me who do not have enough milk for breakfast “,” He will probably be able to infect me “,” What if he doesn’t know he is positive and infects me? “. The emotional state that this family will inevitably experience will be linked to anxiety, sadness and anger which will result in a conversation with particularly aggressive and / or anxious tones when they set foot inside a supermarket. What happened? Simple: doubts, insecurities and remote fears have generated and fed a negative internal dialogue, from which dysfunctional emotions and behaviors have arisen, replicating a bankruptcy script that we have already implemented in previous experiences. What happens when we think negatively about the probability of an event occurring is a “thought-action fusion”, that is, an equivalence given for certain between the contents of our thoughts and the reality that will surely be proposed to us is exercised (Caprara, 2007). If this cognitive error were experienced, what could be done in practical terms? Our thoughts are so immediate, most of the time what we feel are negative emotions to which we cannot give an explanation. It is precisely in this case that we must stop to listen to our internal dialogue. What are we saying to each other? “And if the children don’t have milk, how will it be possible for them to have breakfast?”, “Maybe we can go once each and talk on the phone while we are at the supermarket to make sure nobody gets close”, “We can put on gloves and the mask and be protected from possible infection ”. These automatic thoughts appear suddenly and the only way we have to recognize them is to feel how we feel. It is also important to learn to question what we think, such as through the technique of cognitive restructuring, that is, to be able to change the way we live and evaluate the situations we experience. Hence, the patient should be encouraged to modify automatic thoughts and cognitive distortions to replace them with more realistic and adaptive ones (Beck, Clark, 2010). Let’s try to create points of view closer to reality. Some questions that could help us in this regard are: “What evidence do I have that someone got infected by being at a distance of one meter from each other?”, “Do I have the certainty that the one next to me is infected?”, “Continue to believe in a probable contagion, what effects does it have?”, “What would I recommend to a friend of ours who has the same anxieties and / or fears of being infected?”. These questions allow us to formulate an adaptive answer, in order to obtain positive emotions and more functional behaviors than in the past. Constancy is fundamental. The substitution of maladaptive thoughts requires continuous effort, as we consciously try to deconstruct a way of thinking consolidated over time, to build a more functional and resistant to “attacks” by the patterns of the past. Over time, the internal dialogue will become functional and, thus, the restructuring will itself be automatic. Cognitive restructuring allows you to differentiate “what you think” from “what is real”, creating a more flexible vision, ready to face unexpected events and becoming an inexhaustible source of resilience. Once you begin to be consciously connected to unpleasant emotions and maladaptive thoughts, the next step is simple. The patient can begin to hope that, by changing his ideas, he can also change his mood.

These days pass slowly, therefore, positive thinking allows us to live better and to enjoy an adequate inner balance. Suddenly, we feel the need to travel, to discover and welcome what surrounds us. We find ourselves asking ourselves: how much do we appreciate what we really live? This quarantine has led us to a stop: a forced break from our life. We observe what happens outside in a muffled way, not really conceiving what is happening, such an event is difficult to metabolize. This requires deep personal work. We have to reconcile ourselves with our internal dialogue and know how to listen carefully, in order to feel worthy of something better. Only then will our emotional state manage to change, thus becoming stronger, more solid and more lasting over time.