Psychological Self-Help

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my feelings. The shield will shelter me for the next four hours. I
am safe." 
Fear reduction: People have overcome fears by watching others
conquer the same fear. They even imitate others seen in a film
mastering a fear. Just having vivid imagery of someone
handling the fear we face may be enough to provide a new
model of behavior for us to imitate. Also, hypnosis or imagery
can be used to create a very relaxed feeling and then to
imagine confronting the frightening situation (see confronting
the fear and desensitization in chapter 12). 
Other fantasies may also help reduce fears: imagine you
are a powerful, important person and the other person (who
scares you) is your subordinate; imagine the woman/man you
want to approach will say "no, I have a jealous boy/girlfriend"
(making rejection less upsetting); imagine a pleasant scene to
calm yourself when scared in any situation. 
Pain reduction: one procedure involves numbing your hand (or
making it cold or changing it into wood or stone) and then
transferring the numbness to the part of your body that hurts.
Thus, reducing the pain. Another procedure involves first
experiencing the pain as movable, say from the back of the
head to the back of the neck, then continue moving the pain
until it is finally out of your body. An example: "Even though
I'm very relaxed, I can feel the pain I have been having. Focus
on the pain (describe it). Now, notice that the pain is
can move within my body. As this fluid moves, it carries the
pain with it. (Very gradually move the pain from its source
towards the right shoulder, down the right arm and into the
right hand). 
As the pain enters my right hand, the fingers tighten into a
tighter and tighter fist... When the fist is very tense, I can
simply open the fist and throw the pain and tension away. Now,
throw the pain away...completely gone. (Repeat if needed)
Appreciate the relief...notice the peaceful calm that remains. I
still have feelings where the pain was, so I will know if anything
is going wrong... I will move, feel, and react normally. The pain
is gone... drained... and I will be able to use this technique over
and over again if the pain returns." Read Hilgard and Hilgard
(1983) and/or Wall and Melzack (1984). Obviously, a
continuing or repetitive pain must be examined by a physician
Building self-esteem: "While remaining very relaxed, think of
the labels that have in the past made you feel down or slowed
you down. Imagine those labels on a blackboard. They are
negative words and criticism from others and from you. Now
wipe them off the board...wash them away...they are gone. Go
to the blackboard, and in place of the negative labels, write
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