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4 Harsh Truths That Will Make You A Better Person - Barking Up The Wrong Tree

Work hard, live longer

One of the biggest truths you will ever come to realize is that hard work, ambition and targets give actual meaning to your life. 

Furthermore, once you have given a purpose to your work, you will most certainly see that motivation goes a long way into making someone's life more interesting to live.

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Challenge Unhelpful Thoughts
Challenge Unhelpful Thoughts

Listen to your thoughts — but don’t necessarily believe them.

They're suggestions, possibilities. But they’re not gospel. You can’t control what thoughts pop up, but y...

Identifying Unhelpful Thoughts
  • Black and White Thinking: There are heaping piles of nuance to most things.
  • Unrealistic Expectations: Cynicism is bad, but a little skepticism is essential.
  • Selective Attention: If your brain is always looking for the negative, you’re gonna find it.
  • Disqualifying the Positive: Sometimes we go into problem-solving mode and focus only on what is broken.
  • Predicting the Future: “This will never work” or “They’re going to think I’m stupid.” You don’t know the future. So don’t act like it.
  • “Should” thoughts: It’s usually just an insistence that the world bends to your will and is a great way to amplify frustration.
Do More Stuff

Doing little positive things is better for happiness than occasionally bagging an elephant:

  • Enjoyable stuff
  • Achievement stuff: Defeat your goals in single combat and feel like a conquering hero
  • Meaningful stuff: Do volunteer work or just help someone
  • Physical stuff: Exercise. Not only keeps you alive, but it’s like miracle grow for your brain
  • Social stuff.
The Impostor Syndrome
The Impostor Syndrome

It is the feeling that you are not worthy of your designation, title, position or success.

Your accomplishments may be due to luck or effort, but you feel you lack the talent or skill ...

The Reality of Impostor Syndrome
  • The impostor syndrome is like a nagging feeling that our success might be due to luck, good timing, or even a computer error.
  • It makes us think we have done nothing, and that we secretly are a fraud for taking undue credit.
  • The person suffering from an impostor syndrome lives in fear that soon the 'secret' about his true nature will be uncovered.
Self-Efficacy is the Answer

The antidote to the impostor syndrome is self-efficacy, which is about learning one's own value.

Self-efficacy is described as a perceived ability to succeed at a particular task. It means having rock-solid confidence, a supercharged belief in your ability. 

People that cause grief
People that cause grief

We all know a few people that cause grief, not merely because they have a bad day but because they have severe problems and are unwilling to change.

We can learn enough to recognize i...

High-conflict people (HCP)
  1. Narcissistic HCPs: They may seem charming at first but think themselves to be superior. They insult, humiliate, mislead, and lack empathy while demanding respect and attention.
  2. Borderline HCPs: They start out friendly but can suddenly change into being extremely angry. During this rage, they may seek revenge for minor insults.
  3. Antisocial (or Sociopathic/Psychopathic) HCPs There extreme charm is a cover for their drive to dominate others through lying, stealing, publicly humiliating people, physically injuring them, and sometimes murdering them.

While these are disorders and these people are suffering, mental health professionals would advise you to keep your distance from them, if at all possible.

Behavior Patterns Of HCP

Everybody has bad days or weeks. To tell if someone is a High Conflict Person, we can look for four traits of behavior.

  1. Lots of all-or-nothing thinking: When problems arise, it is their solution or no solution. They don't compromise or listen to different points of view.
  2. Intense or unmanaged emotions: HCPs become very emotional about their points of view. Their responses are out of proportion to whatever is happening.
  3. Extreme behavior or threats: They engage in extreme negative behavior that includes physical harm, spreading lies about someone else, emotional manipulation, or obsessive contact.
  4. A preoccupation with blaming others: They frequently blame other people close to them or people in authority over them.

Nobody is perfect, but if someone has all four traits, they almost certainly are an HCP.