Learn Positive Coping Skills Today
00:00:01 – 00:05:01
welcome to fading memories. A podcast with advice wisdom and hope from caregivers who have lived the experience and survive to tell the tale. Think of us as your caregiver best friend. Today’s podcast is presented by pago. Pago is the easiest way for you to monetize your podcast providing podcasters with a flat rate for ad space. So you always know how much you get when you include an ad from pago apply today to become a member and immediately be connected with advertisers that fit your audience. That’s pago dot co at p. o. D. go dot co and be sure to baby memories in the. How did you hear about pugo section of the application. Do you wish there was a way to learn to be happier. Your muck if you care for a loved one alzheimer’s you could be eligible for the leaf study. Researchers at northwestern university and the university of california san francisco our testing online positive emotion skill building program help caregivers cope with stress. Today’s episode. We’re talking to dr judith. Moskowitz who is in charge of the study. She tells us many ways to learn to be happier with without her study. I learned many new positive coping techniques just from our conversation and that gives me the confidence to know that you will learn many positive things in this episode today as well. I’m excited today to introduce judy moskovitz. She is going to be talking to us about positive coping skills for caregivers and slightly different than your general self care topics that we hit upon. She’s got a research program that actually trains you on how to shift. You’re thinking into positive gear. So thanks for joining me judy. Thanks for having me. I’m excited to talk about this cool. So why don’t we just jump in and have you tell us about yourself and your program. Yeah happy to so. This works started for me. So i’m i’m trained as a social psychologist in. My expertise is in stress and coping emotion. And i started my career studying how people cope with stress so You know when something difficult happens as it does to all of us constantly difficult happens. What do you do to cope with that to. How do you feel better. And we were doing a study of men caring for their partners with aids. This was the early to mid nineteen ninety s so before the treatments more effective so it ended up being a study of the stress of caregiving as well as the stress of bereavement has many of the partners died and early on in the study caregivers. And we were. We were asking about what’s stressful about the what’s stressful about caregiving. And how are you coping with it. And then that would be the end of the interview and they they said you know you’re not asking us about the good things and we want to talk about that and i were sort of surprised what he good things horrific like this is some of the worst human can experience but they said no there are good things going on and so we added a question where we ask them to tell us about something positive in meaningful that happened in the past week that help them get through a day and they almost in almost every single interview in did hundreds of them. The participants could come up with something positive. That happened recently. That helped him get through a day and they were small things like a beautiful sunset or a walk on the beach or making a a meal that their partner enjoyed so they weren’t winning the lottery. Or you know finding a cure for cancer like they were they were little everyday things and by focusing on them and experiencing now and talking about them they were able to than that help them cope better with the stress of the caregiving the bereavement so based on that finding then some other research. That was coming out in the literature and some more work that we did. We decided that we wanted to put together a program that helped people experience more positive emotion on a daily basis which then would help them cope with whatever type of stress they’re coping with and that’s how our study of this program of skills for caregivers came about that. Sounds awesome and do you find that. This applies to most people all people.
00:05:01 – 00:10:13
Because i know i tend. I tend to run on the negative pessimistic side. I do have to stop sometimes. Think what do you have to be grateful. And look for positive things i learned. I don’t know fifteen twenty years ago a long time ago to one of the ways to shift you’re thinking is to start your day with gratitude you know. Hey got up. That’s that’s a positive. Start to your day or i really enjoyed his or even little things but the people that you were talking to did they. General was it a big enough portion of society that you would have. People like me tend to be kind of negative. Yes so i mean the the the idea for doing this program came about because we were just observing. What people do to cope better with stress. And they were some of them. Were doing these things naturally. So they were noticing positive events and they were expressing gratitude or they were engaging in acts of kindness. So the some people do these naturally. There’s there are definitely individual differences in. What kinds of things you do. What works for you and what you do naturally and so what we did with our program was we put together a package of skills because not everything’s gonna work for everybody so like you said gratitude might be the thing that really works for you whereas you know noticing positive dance or mindful awareness or positive reappraisal one or the other skills that we teach might just not be your thing and that’s fine you just need to find one of we. We asked people to trial the skills that we’re teaching. You usually teach eight to try each of them for a week or so and see what feels right and then pick the one that they’re gonna do because the most important thing is to do it so this isn’t like a course of antibiotics where you do ten days and then you’re fixed right. This is more like physical activity. So you’ve got to keep engaging in these practices and make them have it so that they can have a lasting effect on your wellbeing that makes sense. It’d be nice if you could just you know do it. For a couple of weeks. It’d be cured but unfortunately that’s not how the world works. I know. I have found anything that getting in shape right now for sheep because that’s wrong for a day that’d be great and then be done with that but no that’s not how it works. I definitely found that in twenty twenty. I had to learn more coping skills and then more on top of that in just cause for everybody twenty was it was difficult and i we moved and my mom died and the dog died. Dislike by the end of twenty twenty. I was like none of my coping. Skills are working anymore. So i just had to maybe re tweak them a little bit and that helped but it was. It’s definitely learning as many techniques as possible is very beneficial because now there might be a day when you’re mindfulness trick doesn’t work and being grateful for something or i don’t know i guess they have these new places where he goes smash things or they did when we could go places. That’s something i’d be interested in doing. Occasionally right right. Yeah that you know and if that works for you and it doesn’t hurt anybody else then. That’s should be fine right. Yeah and i. I think either. Twenty twenty in particular has been challenging for the globe the globe. Yes yeah and on top of the regular life stuff. That is really hard and and you’re absolutely right. The the types of things that are the types of coping skills that might get us through one situation might not apply in another context. So it’s helpful to have a whole toolbox of things that you can drawn if one isn’t working for you or it just gets older you’re tired of it. You can try something different. And then maybe that will then having more of an impact for you. What skills do you guys focus on in your program though we have eight skills In the current program that were were teaching for alzheimer’s caregivers we have noticing positive events. So that’s what we learned from the aids caregivers years ago it’s just particularly when you’re under stress. It can be hard to notice the good things that are going on. you know. Humans have evolved to pay attention to the negative stuff. Because that’s adaptive like we need to know if that tigers coming at us right. Yeah so we we we. We’ve evolved to pay attention to that so this ability to notice the good things that are happening even if everything else is falling apart Can help you maintain your positive emotion in the midst of really difficult circumstances so that skill number one noticing positive events and then related to that is savoring capitalizing so this is revisiting the event later telling someone about it putting it in your journal even just thinking about it can help increase the impact of that positive event.
00:10:13 – 00:15:02
It gives you a head of positive emotion. Yeah the third skills gratitude which you already mentioned. It’s noting in a related. All these skills are sort of interrelated. So it’s it’s sort of another version of positive. Events are noticing positive events. It’s noticing the good things in your life that you can be grateful for. The next skill is mindful awareness. So the ability to sort of be in the moment and and not judging how you’re feeling or what you’re experiencing Which i think you know that that skill actually is sort of a it might be synergistic with the other skills. So the more mindful. You are the more you’re going to notice things that you’re grateful for. I learned a mindless Right when my mom ended up in the hospital. And i’m trying to make what felt like life and death decisions. Do we do surgery to fix her broken leg if we do that you know will the anesthesia negatively impact. Her broken brain. Cashews advanced alzheimers. And i literally felt myself just spinning up a knew what was coming. I was going to have a meltdown than an argument with the husband. Which would have been just perpetuated the negative and thankfully for me. I’m hubby secondarily. I had just talked to mindfulness. Coach for the podcast. And one of the things he said was when you feel these negative emotions is to stop and say oh hello and then my particular case that day. It was like hello anger. Why are you feeling angry. And as i asked myself that question and it was like in within thirty seconds. I realized the reason that i felt the way i felt was because i was trying to do the best possible job for my mom trying to make the best possible decision for my mom so literally in under minute i went from about to explode and cause upset at unhappy negative nastiness to myself into my husband because he’s the only other human in the house to feeling really good about myself and i am not a mindfulness. Woo person. and so that we’re trained to like ignore or you know press down the press the press the negative aliens. Pretend they’re not happening. You know it’s like oh it’s okay my mom’s in the hospital at the beginning of a pandemic in. I don’t know what to do. Yeah it’s fine it’s fine no no no just. I was shocked that literally just accepting the fact that i was upset and angry and asking myself. Why are you angry and getting the answer. Because i’m trying to do the best job for my mom possible. It was like i mean it literally was a mental deep breath. So i’m all about that one now and it’s it’s really a skill you can develop so sometimes it can be a little challenging so like you said especially in the midst of a lot of emotions and a lot of high intensity to sort of be in the moment in realizing what’s going on as opposed to trying to push it away but it is a skill that you can develop through like you know. Mindful breathing exercises. We do some Sort of ways to be mindful in your daily activities so like when you’re brushing your teeth or when you’re driving somewhere you are leaving your house for example but it is a skill that you can you can get. You can both with practice and it can be just tremendously beneficial. Fortunately we had a lot of practice time last year so mike bliss you have four more skills after mindfulness. So the next skill is positive reappraisal And this comes from the fact that the way you interpret. What’s going on around you the way you appraise it in terms of its significance for your wellbeing influences your emotions so the event that you just described to me although you were definitely using mindfulness you are also using positive reappraisal so let me tell me if this sounds right to you so you were faced with several multiple challenges and sort of no good no good way out of it no good. None of none of the options seemed like they would be good. So you are experiencing anger and frustration. And you’re gonna have a meltdown. Yup because it was that bad and when you were able to again this is. The skills are sort of synergistic. Take a moment and be aware of what you were feeling you’re able to identify. I’m feeling anger and label that. And why in your. Because i’m trying to do the best that i can. Which is the reappraisal. Which immediately sort of took down the temperature of your emotional reaction in that moment so initially it was.
00:15:03 – 00:20:00
There is no good solution here. This is horrible. I’m going to have a meltdown. I’m a terrible person terrible caregiver. I’m a terrible daughter. Emma terrible spouse straight to all that was probably they’re not too far below the surface but when you were able to take a moment and reappraise it do a positive reappraisal think about it in a slightly more positive way like i’m not all those terrible things. I’m actually a really great daughter. And i’m doing the best that i can. Which immediately makes you feel better right. So that’s a positive reappraisal. It’s a really again. It’s a skill that takes some work in some practice to sort of be able to to do it because it’s often you know it’s of your initial appraisal is your. It’s how you’re seeing things. It’s not always easy to change that But with some practice usually with sort of lower state things we have people start with tiny minor stressful events. Not like major reappraise your entire difficult childhood or something like that we start. We start small. Misplaced your keys in your early frustrated. So if you start with that and then you positively reappraised it It can it. Can you can sort of build up that that muscle in the ability to reappraise things and then you end up with more positive emotion as a result in that moment it was literally i was walking across the living room and i was and i was literally like i could feel it new like the volcanic explosion was coming. It was about to happen. And i don’t know if it was his words. Were in my head. I dunno aware came from but it was like stop and i literally stopped walking. Close my eyes and said why are you angry. And i got my answer. I know part of it too. Was i felt because i was the one making the decision. I was also. I was going to get any blame if the decision was wrong. And there wasn’t a right all responsible. Yeah yeah so was just you know. I’m just so grateful that i had talked to him. Because i know how that would have just been. That was lunchtime ish early lunchtime late morning early afternoon. The whole rest of the day and night would have just been terrible. And i didn’t need that on top of my mom being in the hospital and this pandemic starting and no says really glad that skill and i’ve told people i’m not like a mindfulness person. I you know i cannot sit quietly be in my own mind because that makes me nuts Right right and i wanna hear my own thought. Yeah they’re in there. I know right yeah. It is never been a personal favorite either but honestly in the past year with the pandemic. i’ve been doing more. Mindfulness practice in. It’s been really helpful. You kinda stuck. He’s gonna be really beneficial. Only one person in your household the talk to and they’re not helping then we have a lot of opposite right. You’re stuck with yourself right. Yeah so you’d better find your own answers. Which is what most of us had to do. Okay so we got positive was at reaffirmation. Positive reappraisal reappraisal reappraisal. It’s like cognitive reframing in the cognitive behavioral therapy world so similar to that but yeah positive reappraisal okay than the next skill is Noticing your personal strengths. So this this is Again sort of when you’re experiencing stress it’s sometimes hard to see what kind of personal strength resources you have to bring to the situation so this is about taking a moment and seeing that they’re sort of are good things about you so again. I see some of that in the situation described as well like i’m actually good daughter and i’m doing a good job. I’m really trying here. So those were strengths with you. You’re you know persistent thoughtful loving caring. You know so like there are lots of things like that so this in the skill we help people sort of realized the strengths that they do have and then the ways that those can help them cope with the stress related to that but but also sort of a shift is attainable goal setting and for some people. This is just as natural as breathing right. It’s on on research showing that when you feel like you’re making progress toward a goal that you have more positive emotion. It doesn’t you don’t even have to attain the goal but if you’re making progress so if you’re able to cross things off your list that gives you a hit a positive emotion and helps you cope better with the situation. I am I know sometimes do you. Even if you wasn’t on your list and you do something do you write it on your list and then cross it off Sometimes i do that. I had to do that just to get that. Hit a positive emotion right.
00:20:00 – 00:25:02
I had two items on my to do list let yesterday afternoon. And after two and a half hours on zoom and feeling like zombie and my brain was putting i. I just literally wanted to take it up. And i knew if i did that i wouldn’t get those two items on. We’re talking two hours tops and it was two thirty so i had you know good couple hours to take care of the to our tasks so i went for a walk in the sunshine. And what i got back. One of the tasks required me to start another which wasn’t on the list but by the end of the evening his dinner was later than general because my husband had He had to actually leave the house in meet a client. It was like oh well. I- reenergized myself with sunshine. Brisk walk in really short like fifteen minutes. And i tackled extras. I was like. I feel really good about myself last night. Yeah and i think even that that walk that you took outside. If you’d put that on your list at the beginning of the day then you could have crossed it off in that would would make you feel like you’re being progress on this. It’s actually something that i started doing early on. In the pandemic is my daily daily list had been work related before that so but even though i was working from home throughout the pandemic started adding things get outside twice so to my list because that you know helps and other ways too but that again that gave me something else to cross off my list which made me feel good so the the attainable goals portion of the program. We help people sort of follow the smart goals framework so is civic is it. Measurable is is a realistic time bound so really helping people go from. I want to You know what i was used. I don’t know why curing cancer said like. That’s too big a goal for most of us like today. I’m going to cure cancer. So you need to break that down into more manageable pieces conversely you also don’t want the goal to be too easy because then there’s no chance today i’m going to breathe most of us not everyone but for most of us like that’s easy right so so we we when we have a facilitator teaching these skills they can help the people. I’m sort of narrow them down and make them attainable so that they’re more likely to get this positive emotion as a result in that Attainable skills does that. Include in the training like tracking. How long certain things take because for some reason. I’m not entirely sure what happened. November was a disaster. I started remember second with my schedule. Getting blown to smithereens just for that one day but the rest of the month had never got better product. Yeah and i mean. I was making changes and trying to do different things. And i think it was all cumulative i’m sure it was cumulative and so just kind of out of what’s the right word kind of self preservation. I started tracking. How long certain items taken. I assumed for example. That the email that i send out to my subscribers. It’s not it’s not long there. It’s it’s the same format every week. It’s basically kind of like plug in the information right out my thoughts and send it to the guy that schedules it. So i’m like. Oh i looked at my watch when they like half an hour between now and i guess it’s probably like half half past the hour so my oh i should be done with this by two o’clock and the next thing you know it was like two twenty and i was just about wrapping up. I’m like this doesn’t take me half an hour. This takes closer to an hour. And so now i know these emails taken our not half hour. So now i’ve i’ve. I’m not sure having gained that half an hour but i’m not. I have gained a lost the expectation that i have that half an hour. One of the things. I’m trying to do with my life. Is you know because if worked from home for sixteen years and there’s very little to do besides work and eat and watch. Tv there’s hobbies that take participate in on the weekend. That take a lot of time. And so i am trying to structure my day so that i have a little more time in the afternoons early evenings. Maybe dabble a little bit in my hobby. Which worked so right positive which is tantamount goal. Yep cut-rate lutely so. We don’t go into quite that much detail like you’re saying you know actually time tracking the things that you’re doing adjusting nat But there are entire goal setting programs that you really really likes the skill. you could go deep. We were a little bit more sort of level in terms of setting attainable goals than the last skill that we do in in this particular.
00:25:02 – 00:30:00
Our current program for for caregivers is self compassion and again. That’s what i’m hearing when you talk about sort of your expectations for how long things are gonna take our how much you’re going to be able to get don. I’m hearing self compassion so basically cutting yourself some slack treating yourself like you would treat a friend who is in the same situation so a a really helpful. Way to think about practicing self compassion. Ziff’s a friend were experiencing what you’re currently experiencing. What would you say to them. Because the way we talk to ourselves often much harsher than we would talk to a friend were buried self critical and hard on ourselves whereas if a friend were going to the same thing we would be much more supportive. Much more compassionate. So that’s what this self compassion training does help. You cut yourself some slack. That’s important it’s really important. I learned last year. Also and i don’t not really maybe it was just forced to be as the pandemic but was to acknowledge when like coping. Technique wasn’t working like after the dog died. This dog was my shadow. My has been referred to him as my stalker. And i mean he was geriatric. It wasn’t it was only a surprise because he literally went from fine one day to what the hell happened. The next which is not uncommon in geriatric age for people or dogs. Or whatever and my husband you know being male like why. Don’t you do x. Or you you enjoy making your greeting cards. Go do that and it was like. I don’t want to because dogs not upstairs with me and it was just like one day. I literally stopped. And i said none of my coping techniques are working and. I’m not sure. I have the coping skills to come up with another coping skill. Like just leave me alone in. So i just just acknowledging that mindfulness positive thinking the being grateful now. That was working. That helped too. So yeah and that’s a really important point and something that we try to emphasize throughout the program so this is not about just bake lite. You’re happy or you know no matter what’s going on. Pretend it’s not bad and just put a smile on your face all be fine. You know it’s not pollyanna it’s really And we talk about toxic. Positively and the sort of brute force. Just you know pretend like it’s all fine. Net is not what this is about. This is based in science and research and we know that people who are experiencing really extreme stress all kinds of life stress can also experience positive emotion positive things alongside it. And that’s what these skills helping you to do. So it’s not gonna make the your loved one’s dementia go away. That’s still going to be there. It’s not gonna make the fact that your dog died not true tight and you still going to have all those negative emotions but what it will do is is help you bring in more positive emotion alongside those negative emotions because you can experience both right so yeah and sometimes nothing you do is gonna work. And that’s just you know life you accept it and you move on. It’s yeah yeah and then you can go back and say well you know. I haven’t tried positive reappraisal or haven’t tried attainable goal setting in today. I’m going to do one thing and it’s going to be walk around the block and that’s my one thing that i’m going to do and when i do it i’ll be like oh i did one thing right and maybe you’ll feel just a tiny bit better right accents though. Yeah it’s it’s just. It’s really important that we’re not talking about pretending like everything’s fine because it’s not why i see a lot in caregivers circles people innocently and with no no harm intended. They’re like you can do it. It just hang in there. And sometimes i really cringely here like some like this person is doing seventy five eighty percent on the care of their loved one. Allow o.’neil. yeah they have some help or family comes in or whatever but you know. They’re kind of hanging on the they’re hanging on by the not in the knots coming undone and may it goes back to being a bit on the pessimistic side. But when i hear that. I i would rather say you’re right this this is hard. This sucks this. Never seems like it’s ever going to end and you know the only way it’s going to end is when somebody dies so that’s not really a positive thing. Tell me a little bit about toxic positively because we also when you said that it kind of cracked me up because there was a trainer at the gym that i used to go to back when that was a thing and she would.
00:30:00 – 00:35:04
She hated it. If you didn’t smile you’re working out. Which makes me crazy. ’cause you know. Hey not smiling. Because i’m working hard to strengthen my body like frayed right. So what exactly is toxic positively because it almost seems like an oxymoron. I know right so that maybe that’s not the right term to us so what we don’t want is to just give the message that this is easy if you would just smile it’ll all be fine right or it can end up if you aren’t able to do that aren’t rolling and it’s still hurts like it’s still bad you can end up blaming yourself. It’s sort of the victim kind of thing like i. Can’t you see this particularly in serious illnesses. like cancer. people who have cancer and they’re like. I have been able think my way up this. I can’t think positively enough and i’m still getting worse and it must be my fault right. So that is that’s toxic positively right so that just makes it worse like this idea that the mind influences the body and if you just do all these positive thanks to have more positive emotion you’ll look forever. It’s it’s a little more complicated than that. I mean the way. I think about it as the skills can help. You have more positive emotion on a daily basis so it can increase your wellbeing. So you’ll feel better. It may have downstream effects on your physical hell we don’t studies aren’t in yet on the actual interventions where you teach people these positive skills and see if they live longer. We know that people who naturally have more positive emotion live longer. But we don’t know if we can you know. Dial it up in people like if we can give them program to do that. I’d like to do that study sunday. But right now we’re at the phase where were were showing that we can teach people these skills they can learn them they can understand them they can practice them and it makes their emotion increases their emotional wellbeing so they feel better also decreases depression decreases caregiving burden. So there you know subjective outcomes but that’s the gold standard as far as i’m concerned if you feel better if you’re a caregiver experiencing all this stress but you’re feeling better than that can only be a good thing right. Well that makes you a better caregiver that too yes and i’m not a huge fan of pharmaceuticals because i think that’s almost a slippery slope for a lot of people regardless like my dad ended up on twenty five different medications for all of his chronic illnesses. And then to me. That’s just prescription soup in. It’s like a swamp of drug. So that’s that’s my biggest reason for being wary of using medication to take care of a problem. And i know there’s a lot of people that need antidepressants. Just so they don’t harm themselves. But if you can have better outcomes. Just by reframing your thoughts and learning better techniques i pharmaceuticals are cheap so to me. That’s that’s an important thing is. I like natural my young as yeah. I mean and that’s absolutely an individual choice. I would never tell someone that they should do this program instead of going on antidepressants. Absolutely not but alongside the anti-depressants great. Or maybe you wanna try this. I if you’re not so depressed that you you know urgently needs gone antidepressants. And so. I think it’s really an individual decision. Definitely a maybe. Your program would enable somebody to go on less of a dose of medication. You know there’s all it’s yeah everybody’s we actually have a well. Yeah in in in one of our research studies where we tested this program in people newly diagnosed with hiv. We found that At the at the start of the study before the intervention group learned these skills they were at about it was like seventeen or eighteen percent of them. Were on antidepressant so the self reported but at that point the both in the intervention group and the control group. They were both at about eighteen percent than fifteen months later. The intervention group learned the skills over about six weeks and then we did follow up fifteen months later. The intervention groups still about seventeen. Eighteen percent were on antidepressants. In the control. Group of people who didn’t learn the skills thirty five percent of that more on anti so again you know. It wasn’t one of our primary outcomes we didn’t it was self reported but maybe the people who didn’t learn the people who learned the skills were able to sort of maintain their level of wellbeing. And if they were on antidepressants they stayed on them. But there is the control group. There was a big increase in the number of people who went on antidepressants over time. So it’s suggestive that these skills can be helpful for your mental home.
00:35:05 – 00:40:07
So how did you shift this program from researching carriers for people with hiv to others. Despite i mean i think i know one answer is because we do have treatments hiv. I guess i don’t know if that’s the right word. Yes so i mean. Hiv is now much more chronic illness. I did start my work. In the area of hiv both hiv caregivers as well as people who themselves had issues. So that’s where my work started but it isn’t an hiv specific program. It’s a general coping with stress program. So we’ve really we’ve we’ve Tailored the program to many different kinds of stress so women with metastatic breast cancer. People with type two diabetes people with elevated depression high school students more currently looking at In our first caregivers First dementia caregivers study was all kinds of dementia. Caregivers and now. We’re the casino on alzheimer’s caregivers specifically but the programs the same you know it’s really it’s not about you know. How do you handle this type of problematic behavior or you know. How do you manage the medications or that kind of thing. It’s how how are you coping with stress and the skills that you learn can apply to any kind of stressor experiencing. We did develop a program for coping with the pandemic so tomorrow general public program. So it’s really the that this is a It’s a general coping skills program that we’ve applied in specific types of stress groups including alzheimer’s caregivers mic cents. Seems like all of us should take this program. I think so yes i know. I’ve benefited from learning new coping skills and my mom is gone so my coping skills was just getting through twenty twenty and losing. Mom lives in the dog. Moving pandemic and i’m a planner. And when you can’t plan what’s happening tomorrow or next week. That’s really stressful. And that’s one of your coping skills taken away from you right. Yeah like well. Yeah i like to be able to plot out. You know what i’m gonna do. When and where. I’m going to go and i like to keep it means it’s a loose scheduling but it that allows me to get everything done but when you’re like well i can work core. I can work more. Or i can do just like everything is either in this one room or in this house. Yeah last year was a challenge for all. Yeah and we’re still a little bit but the light. I heard a good statement. Today is we can see the light at the end of the tunnel now even though the tunnel is really long. Least it’s they’re like feel like yeah. I think that’s true. Well i’m hearing from you. Is your teaching people how to see a light at the end of a long tunnel. Yeah yeah. I think that’s a really nice way to put it. Yeah so sort of on a daily basis if were able to increase ho or relief or happiness or joy or any of those positive emotions I think i would. I would consider our program of success will wear people find out about your program. Yes so For alzheimer’s caregivers they can go to leap study. L. a. f. s. t. e. y. Dot uc sf dot edu. Assume we could. We could drop the drop lincoln. You’re exactly as soon as they’re least so that leaves study at ucsf dot ucs at so. Yeah le- studied at ucf dot edu and that goes to a description. There’s a button on that page that you can click and see if you’re eligible to be in the study where do some if somebody’s not eligible for one reason or another. Where would you suggest people go and search out the same kind of knowledge training so They can find out more. So we’ve got. We do have a program. So if i mean. If they’re alzheimer’s caregivers we really want them to go to the study. So that’s because that’s the research study. We want alzheimer’s caregivers in there so we don’t want people who’d be eligible to that some go learn the skill somewhere else. So do the recent study the loose. Study smart to do the research papers. And it’s more of a deluxe version. I think you get a little more if you do the leap study. So there’s that we do have a sort of a general public version that’s it self guided line And i’ll have to send you the link to that. Because i don’t have that one memorized but that one we we can put in the show notes as all towns terrific. So is there any last suggestion. You have for people on how they can have more positive coping skills between listening to this and maybe participating in the research program.
00:40:08 – 00:45:04
Yeah i think just just the realization that even if things are really stressful there are moments of positive emotion in there are moments of joy and to look for those those. Those moments provide you some respite. Even if it’s just a moment but it can be really helpful. Oh yeah just just knowing that you can. Experience positive emotion alongside the negative emotions. Bet that come with the stress of being a caregiver. I learned to not to take things to too seriously which is a little counter to my personality. A story that. I don’t tell terribly often at my mom had not been in the memory care residents too long. I was taking her out to get her nails done and the her shirt was a little bit too big and it slipped off her shoulders and i remember glancing over at her going one of his black sports bra. That is you’re wearing flipped out and said you know. Why is she wearing some. I don’t know who have no clue who was where they came from. I don’t know where it came from. I don’t know where hers were. I didn’t like rush back into her room and dig through her doors to see you’ve if her bras were president. It’s just was like you know what it is not going to make a difference in the world is she’s somebody else’s bra. I mean you know it just okay. It’s just you you could have gone down the whole negative like or you know. We just bought all these new new garments and you could have gone in a lot of different negative directions. And i just chose to look at it. That’s kind of weird and very strange and we’ll just keep going to the nail plate. He’s right right and you know that’s a positive reappraisal. There you go again so you are in the black sports bra. Your initial appraisal was. Who’s bryce she. You know that’s disgusting and the you reappraised it as actually. This is kinda funny. Where would she brought like It’s actually not that big a deal so that was your reappraisal which helped you laugh at it instead of going down that sort of darker path that you talked about that you could have gone down. Yeah because in the memory care residents. It wasn’t unusual for them to share. Close especially my mom hung out. My mom’s name was diane and she hung out with two other. Diane’s which was a humorous in itself and confusing so every so often i’d see one of them and they weren’t exactly the same size. So sometimes you’d see my mom. This oversized sweater. And it’d be like don’t think that’s yours and another diane. Yeah there was this like you know they’re dressed. They’re clean it’s fine. It’s like you know beyond my mom would freak out if she knew what was going on but she doesn’t so it’s fine you know sometimes you just have to let those much of their little things medium things. Just go because there’s lots of big things you gotta to deal with. And that’s the one thing i learned is the caregivers to sometimes sometimes. Just gotta go with it because there’s bigger fights out. We’re going to happen so this has been fantastic. I really appreciate it in. Urea your reaffirming that my negative self is. I’ve mellowed with aid like to tell people in so you’re reaffirming that that’s true that’s right. You’re you’re doing just fine a little easier now that i don’t have jerry geriatric dog alzheimer’s mom. I just have to deal with myself. And the husband right now and which is seems like it’s it’s almost ending because he’s getting vaccinated this week as he drives for meals on wheels. Yeah i’m humbly. July but whatever i’ve worked from home for sixteen years it is what it is. It’s one of those you can make it a few more humor months. Go anywhere anything. So there’s no place to go. I don’t worry about it so it’s all good. Just keep our vacation in taipei. Which is part of a convention is probably not going to happen. Hawaii pension didn’t happen last year but instead of being like here we go again getting all negative. It’s just like you know what nar plenty of places in the united states visit. We will manage to go someplace this year. Now didn’t go anywhere last year. So even if i get to go to san francisco it’s an improve. San francisco’s about fifty miles west of me. Not like it’s even far can jump on the train and get there today. So but when was the last time you were there. I cannot remember who’s been over eighteen months. I think in january twenty six so by the time people here. This’ll be even longer. But that’s okay it. It hasn’t gone anywhere and it’ll just be that much better when we get to actually go. That’s that’s the other thing. I’m thinking of his. It’s not true you know we don’t go a lot but it’ll just be extra special so more positive thinking that’s another positive reappraisal.
00:45:04 – 00:48:56
See you do this. Naturally so i’ve worked on it so seat thrall people who are listening definitely go to the study because it is possible to retrain a negative pessimistic personality into being more positive. Well i hope after hearing this fantastic episode that you’re feeling a little bit more positive about learning how to manage stress anymore hopeful positive manner. You probably deduced from our conversation. That i feel like i am a pessimistic person. Truth be told all of my life. My mother told me that. I would complain if i was hit with a new axe. I never really thought of myself as complainer. But i did kind of self evaluate my comments and how other people might be taking them. And that’s one of the things that i was mentioning that i was working on so again make sure to check out the show notes. There is a link to the study. All you have to do is scroll down and hit the hot link and if it’s not working on your podcast player definitely head over to the website to specific episode and you will be able to find that. They’re i think this is a fantastic opportunity for everybody. But it’s definitely an opportunity that alzheimer’s caregivers should take advantage of can do right from your home. If you’re not zoom savvy by now well. It’s still super easy. Coming up next week is kind of another episode on making yourself feel better did not intentionally put those two back to back but you know. Sometimes things happen for a reason again. I teased it. Couple of episodes ago it is on. Eft which stands for the emotional freedom technique. And you’re going to really really enjoy that one. My guest theresa takes you through a simple tapping routine that really is kind of interesting and very beneficial so make sure that you are subscribed on any of your favorite podcast apps or if you’re an apple podcast listener. I guess now it is follow. Podcasts are almost always free unless you pay for them in advance. This one is free coming up after. This is a quick promo of a podcast from my friends over in the uk that i enjoy listening to it is called never a straight answer and i think you might get an little fun outta listening to them and as always i’ll be in your ears again next tuesday. Hey why don’t you listen to the never astray on podcast. This podcast aims to cover a wide range of topics from conspiracy theories to popular culture and news. I’m your host gas and joined each week. it’s moco host may say. Hey we look strange. Happenings is going around your area and a little segment. We like to call watts. footsore way. Awful plus we cover the big topics like criticize the mothman. Paul geist secret nazi space programs. Ufo’s closing count as glitches in the matrix. Fly of time travel so much more. We even have the occasional guest. Also we’ve got international years global affairs including span space. I’m beyond so why not check out the never astray on podcast available on all podcast platforms from june spa fi. Wherever you get your podcast fakes oh you can visit. The website never astray code k. I’ve been gas. I’ve been taylor piece.