Managing anxiety, distorted thoughts and ANTS in families

Today’s episode I return to ways to manage anxiety and share techniques from various medical doctors and therapists. Anxiety can be genetic, but more often it is learned behavior. Mindfulness continues to be shown how it reduces anxiety, depression, ADHD and chronic pain symptoms.

In this episode you will learn:

  • Dr. Daniel Siegel’s hand model of the brain
  • Dr. Daniel Amen’s killing the ANTs
  • Distorted thoughts categories

Managing distorted thoughts:

  • Anxiety-struggle with ruminating, controlling the worry, irritability, impacting concentration and memory, struggle w sleeping
    • Body symptoms-headaches, stomach aches, sick more often
    • Panic attacks-feel like having heart attack, shortness of breath, think you’re going to die
    • worry about future
  • Daniel Siegel discusses flipping your lid when you get angry-hand as your brain model (video below) 
    • Palm equals brain stem-fight, flight, freeze and faint response
    • Thumb is limbic area-amygdala and hippocampus-help generate emotions, memory and our relationships
    • Cerebral Cortex-from second knuckle to fingernails
    • Prefrontal Cortex-where fingernails are-helps us think, reflect, organize thoughts, make decisions, manage emotions, help us calm down limbic system
      • Mindfulness practice helps strengthen prefrontal area-what fires together wires together
      • Helps with self-regulation
  • Dr. Daniel Amen-killing ANTs (automatic negative thoughts)
    • Brains are wired to go to the negative
    • Thoughts will find evidence to prove that distorted thought is true
    • Bring awareness to these ANTs-write the thoughts down
    • Challenge with more positive facts
  • Dr. David Burns and Dr. Amen-discuss various distorted thoughts categories
    • Personalizing, All or Nothing Thinking, “Should’s”, Catastrophizing, Blaming and more
  • Anxious thoughts is like riding an ocean wave on a surf board
  • Imagine thoughts are the leaves going down a stream or river-have choice in holding the leaf (thought) or letting it pass by

Resources (Disclaimer affiliate links)

Dr. Daniel Siegel-Mindsight-The New Science of Personal Transformation and The Whole Brain Child: 12 Revolutionary Strategies to Nurture Your Child’s Developing Mind

Dr. Daniel Amen-Change Your Brain Change Your Life

Dr. David Burns-Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy

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