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pjeby comments on Ugh fields - Less Wrong

152 [deleted] 12 April 2010 05:06PM

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Comment author: pjeby 12 April 2010 06:31:40PM 5 points [-]

Key to this is framing the "take control" action as a "positive" outcome enabler will facilitate action, as Kaj and PJ have already told us.

Actually, positive framing doesn't help -- it just intensifies the conflict and the need for willpower.

What does help is fully engaging with the flinch in order to locate the center of the "ugh field". When training people, I look for the flinch and then immediately steer them towards it.. Avoiding the feeling, OTOH, ensures that you can't access any of the information that creates the feeling in the first place.

(If you've looked at the seventh chapter I sent you, you'll have seen both my advice to "lean into the pain" to "find the fence", as well as one method for dealing with the most overwhelming types of "ugh".)

Comment deleted 12 April 2010 07:14:23PM *  [-]
Comment author: pjeby 12 April 2010 07:47:54PM 5 points [-]

but it seemed like a good idea that, once you have done that, you should find an alternative plan that focuses on achieveing a positive outcome.

If you simply remove the negative, this focus shift tends to happen automatically. And by "tends to", I mean, like every single frickin' time (lots of different clients with different situations).

Per the pain/gain post, when you are not experiencing negative motivation, possible choices of action tend to become mighty clear. The routine thing that people say after the last negative in an area is removed is, "Oh, I think I'll do X. Wonder why i didn't think of that before."

OTOH, if you have to make an effort to focus on the positive, it's an indication that you're pushing against something. If you actually remove that something, you don' t have to push -- the door just flies open when you touch it.

Comment author: LeBleu 15 April 2010 06:39:09PM 1 point [-]

If you simply remove the negative, this focus shift tends to happen automatically.

I don't understand what you mean by removing the negative, and how this is supposed to be a simple act. Obviously it is too late to stop the original pain that triggered it. If you mean removing the negative reaction, I don't understand how you can claim that is a simple action. (Unless you are constraining simple to mean simple for an expert in the particular field of mind modification/psychology/whatever the relevant field is.)

Comment author: pjeby 15 April 2010 06:53:16PM 6 points [-]

I don't understand what you mean by removing the negative, and how this is supposed to be a simple act. ... If you mean removing the negative reaction, I don't understand how you can claim that is a simple action.

Memory reconsolidation and reinterpretation is a simple act - we do it all the time. Suppose that there's an attractive person of the appropriate sex who looks away and avoids you every time you come in the room. You feel hurt and rejected - a negative reaction. Then, you find out that it's really because he/she is attracted to you and too shy to say anything. Your feelings about the matter change immediately.

Doing this for an arbitrary negative reaction is equally simple, at least in principle.

Comment author: taryneast 11 July 2011 02:47:18PM 1 point [-]

Well - this is only true if said person is doing it for a positive reason. If you instead find out that they are actually avoiding you because they really don't like you, then it'll tend to have a further depressing action...

While it's much better to accentuate the positives, and all that - it sometimes isn't as easy as all that - ie as LeBleu mentions, it's not necessarily a simple act.

Comment author: siodine 25 October 2011 04:56:09PM 0 points [-]

Sorry for bringing this up a year or more later, but the seventh chapter of what?