Thursday, March 11, 2010

Reality Check :)

“Perhaps it is not accurate, realistic thinking that keeps people from being depressed but, rather, hope and optimism."- Susan Nolen-Hoeksema.

                           I got this from the chapter on Mood disorders in my Abnormal Psychology Text book....Interestingly this comment was preceded by arguments that people prone to Depression and Depressed people view the world negatively and have a hopeless cognitive style ......

                           The argument takes a turn with this line "Is it possible that depressed people are not distorted in their negative views of the world but are actually seeing the world for the terrible place it is ?" It then goes on to talk about a phenomenon called Depressive Realism that is, it was found that when asked to make judgments about how much control they have over situations that are actually uncontrollable, depressed people were found to be quite accurate. Non depressed people on the other hand were found to have "robust illusions" that they can control all sorts of situations that were actually out of their control and that they have superior skills compared to other people. In the end this statement was made "Research on illusion of control calls into question the notion that depression results from unrealistic beliefs that one cannot control one's environment or form negative errors in thinking about ones self and the world."

                           In other words once they compared the illusions of control between depressed and non depressed people they found out that the people actually having unrealistic beliefs were those who thought that they CAN control their environment and those who have a positive view about themselves and the world, and hence the above statement made by Susan Nolen.

                           I want to share this as I found it quite ironic...... I always consider being accurate and realistic as "good" traits and our elders keep telling us to, "stop floating in the clouds and come back to reality".

                           In this context I think I was a victim to accurate and realistic thinking......after giving it due consideration and experimenting with it I find now ................. It gets me nowhere.

                           And the next time you think about telling someone to get a "Reality Check" ... Think twice will U ... I know I will .:)