Practice Thought Stopping. Cognitive flexibility has been described as the mental ability to switch between thinking about two different concepts, and to think about multiple concepts simultaneously. How Not to Overindulge During the Holidays. People who’ve developed this thought habit are destined to misrepresent reality, since real life is more often than not nuanced and exists on a continuum. Listen to your words. … People who take a "black or white" view of the world also enter a psychological trap, since those who only accept perfection as success are doomed to feel like perpetual failures. In mentally healthy individuals, the goal involves a realistic pursuit of socially useful ends, achieving significance, and overcoming personal difficulties. 2) Try something different. While some people naturally have more cognitive flexibility, we all have the ability to become better with intention and practice. It also affects your ability to cope with stress, overcome challenges, build relationships, and recover from lifes setbacks and hardships. How to Be Mentally Strong. To maximize your cognitive flexibility, you may want to reduce intake of sugar and unhealthy fats (e.g. Mental disorders emerge when the goal is unrealistic and overly selfish. Compliance 3) Question your thoughts and words. The history of psychology—and, by now, the accumulating empirical evidence—suggest that the importance of psychological flexibility for mental health is one such truth. In his 1966 book The Psychology of Science, the humanist psychologist Abraham Maslow wrote: "I remember seeing an elaborate and complicated automatic washing machine for automobiles that did a beautiful job of washing them. Take a coffee break. Help them learn how to switch gears quickly and find new solutions to problems when circumstances change without warning. We’ve relaunched our KS1-4 mental health and emotional wellbeing lesson plans in time for schools to plan for new statutory PSHE requirements ... Providing members with dedicated support, resources, … In other words, psychological flexibility in the ACT framework pertains mainly to the person’s commerce with the world, and is viewed as a person’s ability to adapt to dynamic situational demands, effectively summon and direct their mental resources, shift perspective with agility, and balance competing desires and demands. Or once in a while change the order of your day. Here are five brain exercises to help you do it: Change the context. hoag.org. The goal, emerging vaguely during childhood, involves one’s self-constructed path for overcoming inferiority. According to Gestalt theory, therapy happens at the contact boundary between the client and their environment (in particular, the therapist). Cognitive flexibility is the ability to transition from one topic or concept to another. Confluence (or fusion) involves a loss of distinction between self and other. Developing a more flexible mindset allows us to evaluate and adjust to the different tasks, roles and responsibilities we are presented with each day with less stress. Instead of being attached to your current way of thinking, try a different perspective. Exercise offers a great mental boost while offering a change of scenery. Learn more. The notion of psychological flexibility as a mark of mental health has a long history in psychology, albeit in different guises, and multiple theorists and practitioners over the years have advanced their own versions of it. LinkedIn Image Credit: KlingSup/Shutterstock. Parents and teachers should connect if they notice kids struggling with flexible thinking. The Longevity Stick regimen incorporates a series of 12 movements designed to improve balance, flexibility, strength, mental focus, breathing capacity, and vitality. More and more adults are concerned with their health and exercise regularly but… do they also worry about mental health? 5) Mix up the way you think. Introjection refers to "swallowing" outside influences whole, without proper vetting and discretion. Clients are trained to observe their cognitions, weigh evidence for and against a given thought, compare it to alternative ones, and pick the thought that is most likely to be accurate, rather than the thought that showed up first, or the one that "shouts the loudest.". Workplace flexibility is a strategy that emphasizes being able and willing to adapt to changing circumstances when it comes to how work gets done. Interact with emotional and sometimes hostile customers. Workplace flexibility meets the needs of both the business and its workers. “In a study led by Koutstaal, older adults who participated in a variety of novel and stimulating activities over a three-month period demonstrated a significant gain in creativity, problem-solving abilities and other markers of 'fluid intelligence' when compared to the control group.”  Novelty encourages mental flexibility and over-time supports brain growth to maintain those changes over time. Workplace flexibility … When we think of flexibility, most people probably imagine stretching or yoga instead of our thoughts. cognitive distortions) are at the root of depression. Together you can find ways to help. Of course, we’re not talking about physical flexibility in this instance, but many of the same philosophies apply to your mental behaviors. Unhealthy individuals are stuck in one gear; in other words, they tend to overuse one of these strategies, generating conflict and confusion. In yoga, if you want to really get a good stretch and … 4) Be spontaneous. canola oil) and eat an optimal diet for mental health. The mental health and psychotherapy program … Developing Psychological Flexibility is a client information handout which can be used to familiarize clients with the ACT model. Horney believed that neurosis resulted from anxiety caused by interpersonal relationships, particularly parent-child relations. Switch up your environment, and you will feel your mind shift. Go for a walk around the block. It also illustrates a common, yet often overlooked, mental health problem: the failure of psychological flexibility. According to Gestalt theory, the ability to maintain contact, to experience the present fully, is essential to one’s mental health. Good, flexible boundaries allow for alternation between connecting and separating and facilitate a vibrant exchange and assimilation of ideas and influences, thus enabling learning, growth, and health. Mental flexibility is an executive function that allows students to switch focus between two concepts or simultaneously process two different concepts. Psychological flexibility in the ACT framework was defined by Hayes and colleagues as, “being able to contact the moment as a conscious human being more fully as it is, not as what it says it is, and based on what the situation affords, persisting or changing in behavior in the service of chosen values.” (p.8). “I Don’t Allow Men I Sleep with to Kiss Me", One of the Most Contagious and Dangerous Attitude Biases, Psychology Today © 2021 Sussex Publishers, LLC, Surprising Benefits of Physical Exercise on Sex and Orgasms, Two Ways Religion and Spirituality Help to Boost Resilience, How Social Restrictions Impact Human Trafficking, Why Some Bipolar Disorder Patients Are Lithium Non-Responders, Why Change Is Hard Even When We Know It’s Needed, A Nation on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown, Psychopathology: Karen Horney’s Humanist View, Why Your Therapist Should Go "Back to the Future", For Sound Mental Health, Ask Good Questions (Like These). Borrowing from the philosopher Hans Vaihinger, Adler called this goal the "fictional finalism"—fictional insomuch as the goal is a self-ideal, a subjective experience rather than objective reality. At the core, the notion of psychological flexibility pertains to one’s mental agility and adaptability. Demonstrate flexibility and adaptability in a constantly changing team and department environment. In CBT, one goal is to shift from "switch" thinking (all or nothing) to a more flexible "dial" approach, allowing for nuance and gray areas. The American psychiatrist Aaron Beck (1921-present), a founder of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), has also alluded to the problem of inflexibility through his discussion of "cognitive distortions." The way we think of flexibility, most people probably imagine stretching or instead! The way we think of flexibility, you are … Practice Thought Stopping stuck a... Strategies, attuned to the demands of the situation and other therapist.... 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