Becoming aware of the neurotic mind and overwriting it for a happier self

Let’s imagine that you grow up in an environment where your parents engaged in negative self-talk in front of you, self-punishing behaviours, call you stupid or brainless when you do something wrong, or continue bring up the past mistakes you made every time they are not happy about something you did today.

Then as you got older, you engaged in similar activities without being consciously aware of what you did.

And that’s all because of nurture. After all, you were just a child and your only true role models are your parents. Even when you have friends, they won’t be there to influence your life every hour of your life. So you will just learn that what your parents do is normal, therefore correct.

As a result, you don’t question all these learned behaviours. Until someone pointed them out or came to realise it one day because of what you’ve read or heard people talk about.

And you know what?

Those activities I mentioned earlier actually examples of being neurotic. And it actually leads to poor quality of life. You are never happy. And it can actually contribute to the development of “perfectionism mindset” in a person.

I know because that’s the kind of environment I grew up in. I seek perfection in my work. Was never happy, constantly depressed. Hated the world. And it was during my research to understand myself better that I came upon various psychology articles and essays about being neurotic and the neuroticism personality traits. It was then I realised I’ve got a problem.

So over the past few months, I have actually pushed myself to engage in self-compassion and self-care. It was hard at first since it was unnatural for me. But if you keep doing it,  practising those skills for a while, it’ll become easier. Just like training yourself to be able to lift certain weights or to run a marathon.

And it took me a while before I was able to catch myself before I engage in such behaviours. And these days, I can see my mind doing all the weird negative self-talks and punishment-type thinkings. But I will myself not to act on them. I simply acknowledge those thoughts and then push myself to focus on the present. Because at the end of it, you can’t control the events that happened but you can control how you react or respond to those events.

So I actually feel happier compared to when I was in my early twenties and late teens. I also recognised it’s still a work in progress because those negative thinkings and self-talks hadn’t been completely eliminated from my mind.

The other thing that I also realise is, I was actually able to focus more of my attention to creating the kind of life I want because my mind isn’t cluttered with all those bad thoughts. With that, the friction to complete the micro-goals that will put my closer to my destination is much lesser.

Wednesday Science News Roundup #28

Below are 10 science news that I found interesting and are related to topics I care about.

Hidden secret of immortality enzyme telomerase – Research has recently uncovered a crucial step in the telomerase enzyme catalytic cycle. This catalytic cycle determines the ability of the human telomerase enzyme to synthesize DNA. Science Daily

Behavior in high school predicts income and occupational success later in life – Being a responsible student, maintaining an interest in school and having good reading and writing skills will not only help a teenager get good grades in high school but could also be predictors of educational and occupational success decades later, regardless of IQ, parental socioeconomic status or other personality factors, according to new research. Science Daily

Simple urine test could measure how much our body has aged – New research shows that a substance indicating oxidative damage increases in urine as people get older, and describes an easy method to measure the level of this biomarker in human urine samples. This potentially provides a method to measure how much our body has aged, which could help predict our risk of developing age-related disease, and even the likely time-frame for our death. Science Daily

A rare rainstorm wakes undead microbes in Chile’s Atacama Desert – Chile’s Atacama Desert is so dry that some spots see rain only once a decade. Salt turns the sandy soil inhospitable, and ultraviolet radiation scorches the surface. So little can survive there that scientists have wondered whether snippets of DNA found in the soil are just part of the desiccated skeletons of long-dead microbes or traces of hunkered-down but still living colonies. Science News

Some flu strains can make mice forgetful – With fevers, chills and aches, the flu can pound the body. Some influenza viruses may hammer the brain, too. Months after being infected with influenza, mice had signs of brain damage and memory trouble, researchers report online February 26 in the Journal of Neuroscience. Science News

Man Risks Death By Not Pooping For 40 Days – A man has been holding in a poo for over 40 days now, seriously risking his own health. IFLScience

There’s Very Little (Convincing) Proof That Standing Desks Are Actually Good For You – A wealth of scientific research shows us that regularly sitting for long stretches of time has severe consequences for both mental and physical health –and yet computer-based, industrial societies make it extremely difficult to avoid a sedentary lifestyle. IFLScience

The North Pole Has Gone Above Freezing in The Dead of Winter, Stunning Scientists – The sun won’t rise at the North Pole until March 20, and it’s normally close to the coldest time of year – but an extraordinary and possibly historic thaw swelled over the tip of the planet this weekend. Science Alert

The Closest Star to Our Solar System Has Suffered an Insane Eruption – Our closest stellar neighbour, Proxima Centauri, knows how to belch ’em out. According to new research, in March of last year it erupted into an absolute beast of a stellar flare, 10 times brighter than the largest flares produced by our own Sun, even though it has only about one-eighth of the mass. Science Alert

Water on The Moon Has a Surprising Quality, According to This New Study – Recently, scientists discovered that there is an enormous quantity of water on the Moon, hiding beneath the surface. Science Alert