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“Ironic process theory”.

During these pandemic times, amongst the innumerable challenges that we face, the most common ones include fear, anxiety, stress and insomnia too.
I was listening to a fantastic podcast yesterday. An interview with Dr Srini Pillay - Harvard trained psychiatrist and a brain researcher. I share his top tip & straight forward advise in order to deal with stress.
Before that we need to know that there is something called the “Ironic process theory”. What is this theory?
It’s a psychological process whereby deliberate attempts to suppress certain thoughts make them more likely to surface. For example, “Try not to think of a polar bear and close your eyes”. That’s what will keep coming to your mind over and over again.
It is for this very reason, Dr Srini says, “We need to learn to frame anything & everything in the positive”.
If you frame your goals using the word “Not”, we are more likely to do the thing we don’t want to do. Again, if you tell yourself not to kick the ball to the right in a game, studies show you are more likely to kick the ball to the right.
Instead as mentioned before thinking in the positive frame will help get close to accomplishing what you want to.
Something like, “I will stay calm at this meeting” or even “I will stay healthy and fit” works better.
Not the opposite thought process which is, “I do not want to lost my temper at this meeting” or “I am not going to fall ill”.
Use this simple tip in everyday life and benefit from it.
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