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Most of us will do anything not to feel worried or dissatisfied and will try and find ways to soothe ourselves or find ways out of our problems.
However, the key to healing and understanding our potential is to change our relationship to our thoughts and emotions.
We usually buy into what our feelings tell us and allow them to overly direct our actions and choices.
Instead, notice the act of thinking without getting tangled in your thoughts. See your thoughts as ongoing attempts to make meaning of the world — give them power only to the degree that they help you.
The mind's power over you is an illusion. For instance, say one thing while doing the opposite. You will find that it is possible to do the opposite of what you are thinking. (For example, type, I cannot type this sentence, while you are typing the sentence.) Regularly doing this exercise can give you more freedom to do hard things.
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There is an assumption that emotional pain and suffering is a deviation from a default happy baseline. However, it's incorrect. Psychological pain is everywhere.
The goal of ACT is not necessarily to reduce one's problematic thoughts and emotions. It is to help people effectively function while they are distressed and to promote more flexible and value-driven behaviors.
In other words, the primary goal is to promote 'valued living.'
Valued living is going about your daily life in the service of values you find important. Engaging in these actions creates a sense of meaning and purpose.
The symptoms of psychological suffering are problematic when they are linked to behaviors that draw us away from valued living.
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Thinking about our past mistakes usually brings us feelings of despair.
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Putting yourself out there is very uncomfortable for most of us.
But try to remember that discomfort is pretty normal. It's just a feeling, nothing more. So allow yourself to feel uncomfortable and accept that the feeling doesn’t mean you should stop trying that new thing your considering.
New projects can feel overwhelming, so imagining how you will get from start to finish it hard.
But you don't have to do it all in a day. Pick one small thing that will take you closer to your goal. And focus on that.