Saturday, February 20, 2016

The Elegant Solution

I am not going to spell check or edit this post;  I won't even read it over. By the end of this post, hopefully you will understand why.  If not, reflect :).

Affirmations are a positive way of replacing the self-downing beliefs that can interfere with our writing and schlary productivity. Positive affirmations can directly challenge our negative self-appraisals and help reprogram our very plastic minds.

Yet, affirmations are lambasted and satirized, as it in this old Saturday Night Live skit.


One reasons that is that on a fundamental level, affirmations may be part and parcel to the core philosophy that undergird self-downing- that human beings can be judged.

Albert Ellis referred to this distinction as the inelegant verses the elegant solution. The inelegant solution consists of a tool of cognitive disputations and changes whereby we challgne or negative beliefs and replace them with more positiive (and hopuflly honest nad relalistic, as exaggerated self-apprasials are often not belived by us!) self appraslas.

In contrast, the elegent solution consists of challenging the core belief that human beings (we) can be evaluated. An inelegant solution would be challeging my core belif of " I am not a great writer" with "I am a great writer." This certainly can be helpful. Yet, a more elegant solution of " I may or may not be a great writer, but that does not matter. I find my work of value, and I gain value from it. I am a good enough writer to publish, regardles of how I or others evaluate me, so I am just goign to write."

Overtime, devleoping the a "philosphy of self" of radical self acceptance free of all self evaluations innoculates us from the little digs of academic life. It is hard to hold on to the belief of bieing a great writer, for example, when one's article is rejected multiple times. It also is hard to stay motivated when there is evidence that runs counter to our self apporasal.  But eshewing self evaluations in general, and just satying in the moment and process of writing and learning not to evaluate ourselves, we are far more free than if we have to constanly replace negative self appraisals with positive ones.

Now, to hit submit on this unedited post with, from the red lines I can see in the text, many, many writing problems. :). I must be an awful writer :).