The program is actually part of an overall life philosophy based on cognitive therapy (CBT). The author, Ian Berghofer, believes that the lessons of CBT can be used as a basis for a personal philosophy. He also believes if enough people learn this same set of ideas we can create a healthier society capable of adapting to the challenges of our world. Ian tells us the ideas in the philosophy do not belong to him, they come from brilliant minds like Einstein’s. The author’s claim is he simply went to the well with a bucket.
The issue with advocating CBT as the basis for our life choices is the relationship between cognitive therapies and mental health. Arguing that because of mental health we need to reconsider how we all think about the world is problematic. If twenty percent of the population statistically is likely to develop mental illness why would the other eighty percent care? The answer to that lies in the issue for many of us and is a reality of the modern world. Lots of people have abandoned traditional religions for a host of reasons: the rise of free thought; church views on homosexuality and contraception;
The key idea is that cognitive therapy can help us be healthier, happier individuals. To believe that you need to embrace three insights, the first is how we think is how we feel, the second is some thoughts cause us problems and the last is we can modify our problem thoughts and replace them with more adaptive ones. Nearly two thousand years ago a man born a slave who grew up to be a philosopher stated:
“Men are disturbed not by events, but by the views which they take of them.”
Epictetus 1st century AD (from the Enchiridion, a manual and collection of Epictetus sayings compiled after his death by his student Arrian)
Epictetus clearly tells us it’s not what happens that causes our feelings but what we think of the situation. If you consider your own life events you may be able to find a personal example to support this. For example you will have seen the child who falls over gets up and keeps going and another who falls over and bursts into tears. You will probably say they have different temperaments or one has a higher pain threshold or there was something different in the way they fell but even if you were to remove all those variables some kids will cry and others don’t. The real difference is how the child thinks about the event.
Epictetus is not the only authority to make this link. Over two and half thousand years ago Siddhartha Gautama is recorded to have said, “The mind is everything. What you think you become.” Gautama is more commonly known as Buddha. The link between thought and personal satisfaction is centuries old.
The last insight is that we can modify our problem thoughts to make them more adaptive. Can you think back to when some important fact you knew was overturned. Remember the Azaria Chamberlain case in Australia where most people thought Lindy Chamberlain had murdered her own baby, and the immense regret felt for the Mother when the evidence proved she had been falsely convicted, jailed and vilified. You can see humans have been thinking and rethinking thoughts based on new evidence possibly for as long as there have been people. Replacing or rethinking thoughts is common and certainly not new.Rethinking our thoughts to behave in a way with better consequences has been repeatedly proven. If this were not true sports psychology would be ineffective. We can choose to think and what we think will be based on how we understand. How we understand depends on what we believe. This is why sports psychologists invest so much time in positive self-talk for athletes. The “You believe, you achieve” set of thoughts. As we experience success, the evidence of this success drives us to turn the new thought into a new belief.If your life experience tells you that you need to look further for inner peace, then please read the full document in PDF format available at www.CalmConfidentMe.com
CalmConfidentMe is an online business selling a digital self-education stress management program. We believe that clients can live better through a neuroscience approach to skills training.
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