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This is a part of a series of articles with questions, which will help us understand our emotions and how we can free ourselves from unwanted ones.


The following questions may help us understand and overcome our loneliness.

1. "When do you feel most lonely?" "At what times of day or week and in which situations?"

2. " What do you believe that you need at those moments in order to feel more connected with the others or the world around you?"

3. "Is there something which prevents you from contacting other people when you feel lonely?"
a. Do you feel too proud to contact someone?
b. Are you afraid that there will not be the response you want?
c. Or are you afraid of anything else, which prevents you from contacting other people, when you are feeling lonely?

4. "What do you believe which makes you feel lonely?"

5. " What do you believe which makes being alone unacceptable or painful?"

6. " Do you believe in God?" " If yes, how could you feel His/Her/Its presence more tangibly in your life, especially when you are feeling lonely?"

7. "There are also many other people who feel lonely, such as the elderly, orphans, the ill, blind, deaf, paralyzed etc. people who may need help. How would you feel about helping these people with their loneliness?" If not, why not?" If yes, where and when would you like to begin?"

8. "Which beliefs do you need to change here in order to be able to accept being alone?" "How will you change these beliefs?"

9. "Which beliefs do you need to change in order to feel more connected to others and/or God and life?" "How will you change these beliefs?"

10. "Which beliefs do you need to change in order to feel freer to express your needs for greater or deeper contact with others?" "How will you change these beliefs?"

11. "With which persons would you like to begin this expression and what would you like to say?"

Now you may like to describe how you would like to think, feel and respond in future situations. You may find it more powerful to write your description in the present tense as if it is already a reality.

For more on dealing with emotions you might want to check out these sources:

http://www.holisticharmony.com/eft/index.asp
http://www.holisticharmony.com/ezines/index.asp
http://www.HolisticHarmony.com/research/emotions.html
http://www.emofree.com

If we care for our bodies and minds,
they will care for us.
Be Well
**********
***** Reference Box for Publishers *****
************************************
(Robert Elias Najemy's recently released book "The Psychology of Happiness" (ISBN 0-9710116-0-5) is available at
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/redirect-home/holisticharmo-20
and http://www.HolisticHarmony.com/psychofhappiness.html .
His writings can be viewed at http://www.HolisticHarmony.com where you can also download FREE articles and e-books.)
******** **********

How has your mood been lately? Does your mood affect your game? This month, let's see how your mood compares with the moods reported by many successful elite competitors. Much like studying great players for ideas to improve your serve, your focus on mood will help you discover some terrific mental keys to success!

Defining Mood Mood is usually defined as a transient feeling, emotional tone, or general attitude. As a temporary emotional state, mood fluctuates depending upon circumstances. For example, a disturbing phone call, new romance, or tennis championship could rapidly alter your mood. Mood is sensitive to inner experiences, environmental factors, and our appraisal of events, whether positive or negative. For some individuals mood remains relatively stable, while for others mood is much less predictable. Extreme mood disturbances are classified as psychological disorders (e.g., depression, bipolar disorder) and require the assistance of mental health professionals. For our purposes, let's focus on the mood patterns that occur every day among non-disturbed healthy athletes.

Mood - Performance Relationship Take a moment to recall the last time you were in a great mood playing tennis (hopefully often!). Describe your feelings. How did you perform? Did the way you performed improve your mood, or did your emotional state help you play better? Although it is still too early to accurately predict competitive outcome from analyzing mood, studies show that certain mood patterns are quite common among elite athletes, and that successful athletes display these patterns more often than less successful athletes.

How do you measure your mood? One simple way is to carefully record your emotional states in a diary. Perhaps the most popular self-report measure of transient mood states is the Profile of Mood States (POMS), developed by McNair, Lorr and Droppleman in 1971. This questionnaire taps six mood dimensions including tension-anxiety, depression-dejection, anger-hostility, vigor-activity, fatigue- inertia, and confusion-bewilderment. I have found the POMS helpful in measuring the mood patterns of athletes from many sports including tennis, as well as with players on the 1996 national champion Florida Gators football team.

Research with the POMS shows that elite athletes score above normal on the vigor-activity scale and below normal on all other scales. A graphic depiction of these scores resembles an iceberg (vigor scale up, all others down), leading Bill Morgan to dub this the "iceberg profile." Although many elite athletes do not display this pattern, it shows up frequently enough to take notice. How would your own mood profile look next to the "iceberg?"

Enhancing Your Mood Just as critical feedback regarding your serve, volley, and overhead is important, you should also start paying attention to your mood states and recording the influence that your mood has on performance. If you are new to this, begin by rating each of six dimensions of your current mood (anxiety, depression, anger, fatigue, confusion, and vigor-activity) on a scale of 1 to 10 (1 = worst ever, 10=best ever). Based on this ranking, pick the mood you would like to work on by linking to the appropriate Mental Equipment article and refreshing your memory on aspects that might help. (Remember that these are just tips to help you perform better in sports. If you are experiencing significant problems with mood, seek professional assistance).

As your mood and performance begin to change, I would like to hear from you. Let me know using this form which articles helped the most and which mood changes were most useful. Keep your chin up

All contents 2003 John F. Murray, Ph.D. Use without permission strictly prohibited. or more information, contact John F. Murray, Ph.D -

http://www.JohnFMurray.com at: johnfmurray@mindspring.com or by calling 561-596-9898