Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Remember the happy moments to help you face the bitter ones


Life is precious. I have no doubt. However, it also carries some sad moment. Those moments that follow the loss of a loved one, when we feel that our world is coming down, broken into pieces that we don’t know how to fix, like a puzzle too complicated that goes beyond our understanding.

There are also moments of physical pain, which we’d like nothing more than to be disconnected from our body that sometimes seems to us a huge weight we’re unable to cope with.

When we feel bad, either mentally or physically, it is difficult to be positive. No matter how many motivational phrases we read and the self-help books that pass through our hands, we just feel to be surrounded by a thick gray fog we don’t know how to get out.

In those sad moments, when ominous thoughts cross our mind and we’re about to give up, the best weapon we have is hope, underpinned by a good past.

The memories of the good times keep us up

When we look back and remember the good times, those we shared with others or we have experienced intensively, they become the fuel that gives us the energy we need to move forward. Therefore it is very important to have memories of good moments to help us face the most difficult hours.

Those good times not only become an oasis of peace that give us a shelter in the storm, but are also an incredible source of hope. As bad as we can feel, if we look at the future with hope, if we believe that tomorrow will bring us experiences worthwhile to be lived, we’ll find the strength to get out of that black hole.

Therefore it is very important not to waste the present. In fact, we can understand the present as a bank account into which enter the good experiences, which will use in the future to face the bad times. Today you’re building your tomorrow, so make sure you create a strong foundation that can withstand any kind of emotional earthquake.

Feeling: The key to treasure good experiences

To treasure the good times you don’t need to do anything special, just learn to be aware of the “here and now”. When we learn to look at the details and enjoy the little things, we are creating good experiences, without even realizing it.

Just let emotions flow. In fact, if you look back, you will notice that your best moments in life are those where you felt happy, elated, grateful, alive ... It simply means to be more aware of what we are experiencing and become a kind of "collectors of emotions", that will be the shield to protects us in the sad hours.

Whenever something amaze you and make you vibrate, excited or happy, don’t run quickly to another direction. Stop for a moment to savor that experience, because it will be recorded somewhere in your brain to become part of the thousand reasons existing to look forward with hope. So you'll know that the days ahead are also loaded with beautiful experiences that worth fighting.

One trick to consolidate the good memories

A research conducted at the University College London, reveals a very simple trick to consolidate the good memories in our brain. In the experiment 26 people have been asked to watch some video clips, some of them just saw the videos and passed quickly to another activity while others dedicated 40 seconds to revive or summarize what they had seen, either in their mind or talking about it.

The researchers appreciated that those 40 seconds of reminding made the difference. In fact, brain scans showed increased activation of different areas, especially the posterior cingulate cortex, indicating that the brain was actively processing what had just experienced. Among those which have not reviewed the video, the memory disappeared quickly.

How can we apply this research to our lives?

When you live an experience you want to treasure, to be part of this "kit of salvation" for the bad times, remind it in your mind, experience once again those emotions and recreate the situation. In this way you will ensure that you’ll keep it in your memory for the future.

Bird, C. M. et. Al. (2015) Consolidation of Complex Events via Reinstatement in Posterior Cingulate Cortex. The Journal of Neuroscience; 35(43): 14426-14434.


Keep feeding your neurons

Remember the happy moments to help you face the bitter ones

Jennifer Delgado Suárez

Psicologist by profession and passion, dedicated to string words together. Discover my Books


Psychology as you never heard about...

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