Friday, October 28, 2011

How are you relating that is not working for you (or supporting you)?

Great question isn’t it?

If you believe that ‘You can’t do anything right’. How would you react when someone approaches you and says “You did a great job preparing that report.”? Depending on the circumstances, you may dismiss, discount or deflect their positive feedback. It depends on whether you have an internal or external frame of reference.

Suppose all day, people tell you that you have done a great job - do you really hear them? Not likely! And then one person points out that you made a couple of spelling mistakes on page 21. How does this resonate for you? It verifies your belief about yourself. You filter the feedback, you delete and distort the positive feedback and focus on the negative. The beliefs you have about yourself, about others, about the world, limit who you can be or what you can accomplish?

We all make decisions (generalizations) so that we do not have to relearn things every day. If you want to open a door, you learned a long time ago (made the generalization) that you grasp the doorknob, twist and pull or push and it opens - you do not have to go through the whole process of relearning how to open a door each and every time. Generalizations are useful shortcuts but they can also get us into trouble.

In an experiment, researchers put the doorknob on the same side of the door as the hinge. What do you think happened when they left adults in the room? They would go up to the door, grasp the doorknob, twist and then try to push or pull the door open. Of course, it would not open. As a result, the adults decided that the door was locked and they were locked in the room!

Young children, on the other hand, who had not yet made the generalization about the doorknob, simply walked up to the door and pushed on it and exited the room.

The adults, because of their decisions, created a reality of being locked in the room when in fact they were not. So how many of your decision (generalizations) about your spouse, your boss, the way it is at work, … leave you ‘locked in’, when others are not stopped by it?

Sometimes we can be our own worst enemies just by how we view ourselves. We can't always make the changes we want because some hidden part of us believes that the behavior is good for us.
As you change, your world will seemingly change.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

Turkey in Oven

Waving Hand

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

The first important step in the very obscure subject of the connection of the anatomy of the brain with mental derangement.

Sir John Batty Tuke (1835 - 1913) was one of the most influential psychiatrists in Scotland in the late nineteenth century. Tuke’s career in Edinburgh from 1863 to 1910 spanned a period of significant social and political changes in asylum governance and care in Scotland. Tuke’s professional success in public and private practice and his powerful role in several prominent medical societies allowed him to influence his colleagues toward a more physiological understanding of mental illness and its treatment.

He graduated from the Edinburgh University Medical School in 1856 and was registered at the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh. Shortly thereafter he went to New Zealand as a medical surgeon for seven years in the Maori War.
Upon his return to Edinburgh in 1863 Tuke was appointed to the Royal Edinburgh Asylum (later re-named the Royal Edinburgh Hospital) as an assistant physician. Under the tutelage of the then superintendent Dr. David Skae he quickly developed a niche in puerperal insanity and published influential articles on the subject.
As his career progressed Tuke also occupied positions of leadership within the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh and wrote an influential article on the "cottage system" of care for insane people where he criticised the traditional Scottish practices of caring for "incurable" insane people by boarding them out with often destitute members of the community in exchange for meager compensation.
Tuke also contributed to a series of “Health Lectures for the People” delivered in Edinburgh during the winter of 1881-2. His lectures on “The Brain and its Functions” debunked the science of phrenology (Something P.P. Quimby had done some 20 years earlier) and used visual demonstrations to teach the public about the brain.
In 1894 , as the appointed to the Morison Lectureship at the RCPE, he chose “The Insanity of Over-exertion of the Brain” as his topic. This series would be the culmination of Tuke’s theory of physical disease as the cause of mental illness. Tuke proposed that both the public and profession had been hampered by Hippocratic classifications of insanity that were entirely psychological and led to an ignorance of brain anatomy, physiology and pathology, and a focus on behavioural symptoms. He condemned the popular notion the public needed protection from lunatics as well as the idea that insanity was manifested through perversion of the intellect. According to Tuke these elements had combined to create communities and medical terminology that regarded insanity as “a disease of the mind.”
Tuke directly avoided the task of trying to explain “the dynamics of delusion” and focused on his theory of cell overexertion by injury, parasitism, deficient cell functioning or defective cell growth. By focusing on cell functioning and cure through rest and nutrition, Tuke rejected attributions of moral infirmity or deficiency in the insane. Tuke saw these ideas as slowing the progress of treatment and scientific understanding since they “construct a psychological nexus between cause and symptom without demonstration of structural change in cortical tissues.” Tuke heralded the study of mental illness through brain anatomy as the way to “a rational system of treatment”and enjoined his colleagues to consider their patients “first as invalids and as an insane person after.”
Aside from the immediate exposure of the lecture hall Tuke’s talks were published in London and Edinburgh as well as in the Journal of Mental Science. He was noticed and respected by his contemporaries and a few years later received his first honorary degree (D. Sc.) from Trinity College, Dublin where he was praised for having made “the first important step in the very obscure subject of the connection of the anatomy of the brain with mental derangement.”
In 1898 he was knighted.