Ignore the Homunculus

Ignore your homunculus.
Yes, even if it's a gnome.
This week we're trying to get more optimistic, and I'm optimistic that we'll succeed...  I mean, we have science on our side right?  Learned Optimism has a ton of great information about being more optimistic and I'm eager to translate the science therein into real action.  I want to spend less time listening to a negative, nasty homunculus and more time listening to the supportive words of a homunculus with some mojo.  So what might a metacognitive master do when his homunculus is acting all mean?  Ignore his homunculus.

I've discussed this before, but thinking isn't always a good thing.  This is especially true if your automatic thoughts are tinged with negativity, self-doubt, and doom.  Yesterday, we started listening to our homunculus to learn more about types of things we say to ourselves. Hopefully, most of the stuff going on in your mind was good, but if you're typical, a fraction of your self-talk is likely to be on the negative end of the spectrum.

The floppy hat and beard theme continues. 
The science suggests that an unending stream of negative thinking (a.k.a rumination), is a major risk factor for depression.  More importantly, one step in combating depression (or enhancing optimism, for that matter) is to distract ourselves when bad thinking creeps in.  That is today's Daily Mind Game:

Ignore the Homunculus

Task: Ignore negative thoughts for one day.

Info: Continue to monitor your thoughts like you did yesterday.  However, today, whenever a thought creeps in that you don't like (i.e. a thought that makes you feel bad about yourself or what you're doing), come up with some way to distract yourself.  You could try saying "NO" in your mind (or "VETO", my personal favorite).  Another suggestion proposed in Learned Optimism is to wear a rubber band on your wrist and give it a gentle snap whenever some negative thinking creeps in. Do whatever it takes, but no negative thinking today.

Goal: An entire day without a negative train of thought lasting more than 1min.

Are you enjoying The Happy Homunculus?  Please show your support by subscribingtweeting, or clicking one of the other social media buttons at the bottom of the page.  Thanks!

No comments:

Post a Comment