Earlier, we learned that we can stimulate different parts of our brain and body systems by deliberately generating images and thoughts . Remember we used the example that we can get ourselves aroused by deliberately creating erotic thoughts.
What about if we use exactly the same idea , but with a focus on compassion and balancing our minds?
Not it turns out that actors can deliberately stimultae things in their minds and bodies so that they can reallt get into a role . In fact , if we put good actors into brain scanners and ask them to get into an emotional role , we see that the areas of their brain linked to those emotions light up. If they ‘re trying to become angry , sad , anxious, or happy character , they can stimulate those parts of their brain.
So it is the same with imagining ourselves becoming a compassionate self: we can stimulate parts of our brain that can help us to rebalance and come out of depression. In this next exercise we’re going to imagine that we are a compassionate character , like an actor playing a role. It is by far best to do it this way because if you try to imagine your genuinely being a compassionate person. , the self-critical self can kick up and say,’Oh no , you’re not compassionate .’
Just being to imagine what it might be like to to have certain qualities-to become a certain character for a role. And then carry this role into your life so that you start acting in compassionate ways.
First , think about ( and , if you like , write down) the key qualities you would have if you were the most compassionate qualities. Clarify in your mind the strenghts; notice that compassionate is not about being sumassive or pushover.
Now, sitting in your chair , engage in your soothing rhythm breathing , and , when settled , imagine having those qualities.It helps if we start to do this playfully , even though the intent is serious.
I will complete in article 3 soon.
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