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Old 05-08-2018, 05:48 PM   #1
Criscodisco45
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Default How to break free and change my way of thinking

I'm looking to get some help changing my way of thinking. There are several issues going on. First, I don't take criticism well. I take it very personally, and rather than try to apply the feedback, I usually choose to wallow in the sadness of feeling inadequate instead. Very much tied into this is my tendency to give up on new things if they don't come naturally to me. I don't want to feel like an idiot, and yet I know that the true idiocy is in not allowing myself to learn and grow because I don't want to deal with the discomfort.

I also have a problem with being aware and present in the moment. I often don't notice my immediate surroundings, and it leads to doing things incorrectly or not catching on to something that's fairly obvious. For some reason, it's almost like the present moment is always taken for granted while my mind is elsewhere, whether it be past regrets, future worries, the song in my head (I'm a musician) etc. I believe this is also why I often have a terrible memory.

Finally, I believe at the root of all this is a lack of love for myself. I get down on myself very easily, and I internalize and wallow. I have a very hard time being assertive and standing up for myself. I often find it hard to identify what my true feelings or opinions are, and I think it's because they're shrouded by this complex web of self doubt and fear of confrontation.

I think I'm simultaneously very self centered but also self deprecating, and I just want to be a normal person who can fully and meaningfully engage with people and the world around me. Any suggestions on what steps I can take to adjust my way of thinking? Has anyone dealt with a similar mental complex? Any advice is much appreciated, thank you.
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Old 05-08-2018, 07:21 PM   #2
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Well... gee... this sounds a lot like me... except that I'm an old man now! Were you, by any chance an only child? I was. And I've sometimes wondered if at least some of the problems I've had were tied to that. Anyway... I see this is your first post here on PC. So... welcome to PsychCentral, Crisco! I hope you find the time you spend here to be of benefit.

I'm not a mental health professional. So I could not offer you anything in the way of a diagnosis. (And mental health diagnosis is not something that we do here on PC anyways.) But, as I read your post, I also wondered if you have ever been evaluated for ADHD? Here are links to 3 articles, from PsychCentral's archives, on the subject of adult ADHD including a 3 minute screening quiz:

https://psychcentral.com/lib/adhd-in-adults/

https://psychcentral.com/lib/treatment-for-adhd/

https://psychcentral.com/quizzes/adhd-quiz/

Also... here are links to some articles on the subject of how to build self-esteem:

https://psychcentral.com/blog/6-tips...r-self-esteem/

https://psychcentral.com/lib/building-self-esteem/

https://blogs.psychcentral.com/menta...d-self-esteem/

https://psychcentral.com/lib/bluepri...-esteem/?all=1

https://psychcentral.com/lib/self-es...that-can-help/

https://psychcentral.com/lib/how-to-...r-self-esteem/

https://psychcentral.com/blog/8-sugg...ve-depression/

https://psychcentral.com/blog/7-tips...keep-it-there/

My best wishes to you...
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Old 05-09-2018, 03:37 PM   #3
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Default Re: How to break free and change my way of thinking

Quote:
Originally Posted by Skeezyks View Post
Well... gee... this sounds a lot like me... except that I'm an old man now! Were you, by any chance an only child? I was. And I've sometimes wondered if at least some of the problems I've had were tied to that. Anyway... I see this is your first post here on PC. So... welcome to PsychCentral, Crisco! I hope you find the time you spend here to be of benefit.

I'm not a mental health professional. So I could not offer you anything in the way of a diagnosis. (And mental health diagnosis is not something that we do here on PC anyways.) But, as I read your post, I also wondered if you have ever been evaluated for ADHD? Here are links to 3 articles, from PsychCentral's archives, on the subject of adult ADHD including a 3 minute screening quiz:


My best wishes to you...

Thanks for the reply! To be honest, ADHD is something I never considered because I don't really have a problem focusing and always did well in school. I'll have to look into those links just in case. To answer your question, I do have a younger brother who I'm not terribly close to but have no problems with either, a fairly typical sibling relationship I'd say.

Have you ever heard of the concept of fixed vs growth mindset? I think this theory is very interesting and definitely could explain part of my problem and perhaps part of yours too. I've attached a link that briefly explains it below. I think this in tandem with the fact that I was never given much responsibility growing up (my parents were the cool parents, practically no chores, very lax punishment and I think this is detrimental long term) has a lot to do with it.

sivers.org/mindset
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Old 09-14-2018, 12:49 AM   #4
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Default Re: How to break free and change my way of thinking

I'm working on several of these issues. They're improving slowly -- at a snail's pace -- but that may be because I have so many issues to work on simultaneously.

I will say that I find it interesting that my upbringing (if you can call it that) was quite the opposite. Starting at the age of 11, I was parentified and made to be a 2nd mother to my younger brother. Although I had major behavior (anger) issues before that, after that I kind of melted into the background and was only criticized... But I was criticized over everything (including being yelled at once because my brother missed the after school bus due to him talking to his friends).

I'm quite familiar with fixed and growth mindset -- I had to suffer through an entire day of presentations on just this (rather than actually accomplishing something useful). Personally, I just see growth mindset as being positive that you can change. I'm a pessimistic realist so it makes me want to roll my eyes, even though I've tried it (unsuccessfully).

I don't see the connection between these issues and ADHD. I know ADHD since I have it... I'm assuming the thought was the Inattentive type of ADHD. But it sounds more like rumination on the past, perseverating worry, and obsessive thoughts about your music. I deal with, in general, those same things (ruminating about the past, perseverating anxiety about everything, and obsessive over-analyzing of little details) but those at atrributed to my Obsessive Compulsive Personality Disorder. ***Note: I am NOT suggesting you have OCPD. Many mental health problems deal with these same issues to varying degrees.

I can't offer any help or suggesting on improving this stuff. The only way these have been affected by my therapy was by finding the root cause of the problem: I realized that this was mostly caused my mom -- I couldn't do anything well enough to gain her approval or praise... Success was just expected and any achievements I got she one-upped me on... So it took realizing that most of my issues tie back to mother and my anger/hatred of her to help fix it. Being childishly defiant, I'm determined to push aside the Jimeny Cricket-esque mother on my shoulder and just do my best. ('Mom said it was wrong to ask for help. But she's an idiot so I'm going to do the opposite of what she said.' As I said, it's childish to do the opposite just because it's what she said but it's proven to be increasingly effective.) Like I said, it's slow going and thus far I haven't been too successful but that's not from ineffectiveness as much as forgetting to implement it all the time. (I struggle with integrating such things as habits but once I get it, it shpuld be quite effective. And if it works, who really cares if it's based on childish behavior or not?)
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