CHANGE YOUR BRAIN, CHANGE YOUR LIFE --- THE BREAKTHROUGH PROGRAM FOR CONQUERING ANXIETY, DEPRESSION, OBSESSIVENESS, ANGER, AND IMPULSIVENESS by Daniel G. Amen (UC Irvine, Professor). Times Books/Random House, 1998
INTRODUCTION TO THE PAPERBACK EDITION (pix-xi)
INTRODUCTION --- WHAT MAKES A GOOD MANAGER? (p3-15)
1) For those who have eyes, let them see --- Images into the mind (p16-24)
2) Carving knives and tooth fairies --- A prelude to the brain and behavior (p25-36)
3) Looking into love and depression --- The "Deep Limbic System" (p37-54)
4) Enhancing positive thought patterns and strengthening connections --- Deep limbic system prescriptions(p55-81)
5) Looking into anxiety and fear --- The "Basal Ganglia" (p82-96)
6) Mastering fear --- Basal Ganglia prescriptions (p97-110)
7) Looking into inattention and impulsivity --- The "Prefrontal Cortex" (p111-133)
8) Becoming focused --- Prefrontal cortex prescriptions (p134-149)
9) Looking into worry and obsessiveness --- The "Cingulate System" (p150-170)
10) Getting unstuck --- Cingulate system prescriptions (p171-185)
11) Looking into memory and temper --- The "Temporal Lobes" (p186-202)
12) Enhancing experience --- Temporal lobe prescriptions (p203-211)
13) The dark side --- Violence --- a combination of problems (p211-224)
14) Brain pollution --- The impact of drugs and alcohol on the brain(p224-244)
15) The missing links --- Drugs, violence, and the brain (p225-256)
16) I love you and I hate you, touch me, no, don't, whatever --- Brain patterns that interfere with intimacy (p257-280)
17) Help! --- When and how to seek professional care (p281-296)
18) Who is Andrew really? --- Questions about the essence of our humanity (p297-300)
Dozens of brain disorder cases reported in this book, and thousands of "SPECT"
studies of clients with brain disorders, demonstrate that the answer to the question
"Who are we really?" is that "We are really who we are when
our brain works right!"
19) Brain "dos" and brain "don'ts" --- A summary of ways
to optimize brain function and break bad brain habits! (p301-306)
Do this list of 50 recommendations for optimizing your own brain function so
you can begin to break bad brain habits that can hold you back from successfully
getting what you want out of life and being happy in the sense of "flow"
 Do wear a helmet in high-risk situations
 Do drink lots of water --- six to eight 8-ounce glasses daily --- to stay well hydrated
 Do eat healthfully --- adjusting the proportion of protein and carbohydrate to your brain needs
 Do take gingko biloba as necessary under your doctor's supervision
 Do think positive, healthy thoughts!
 Do love, feed, and exercise your internal "anteater" to rid yourself of "automatic negative thoughts" ("ANTs")!
 Do take time to focus on the things you are grateful for in your life daily
 Do watch the Disney movie Pollyanna
 So spend time with positive, uplifting people
 Do spend time with people you want to be like --- you will more likely become like them
 Do DEVELOP your "PEOPLE SKILLS" to become more "connected"
and to ENHANCE LIMBIC BONDS!
 Do BUILD a "LIBRARY" of wonderful experiences
 Do make a difference in the life of someone else
 Do EXERCISE
 Do regularly "CONNECT" with your loved ones!
 Do learn DIAPHRAGMATIC breathing
 Do LEARN and USE self-hypnosis and meditation --- on a daily basis
 Do remember the "18/40/60 Rule" --- At eighteen, you worry about what
everybody is thinking about you. At forty, you don't give a damn about what anybody thinks about
you. And at sixty, you realize that nobody's been thinking about you at all! People spend their
life worrying and thinking about themselves --- not you!!
 Do collect"PENGUINS" --- in order to remind yourself to notice the
GOOD THINGS about the people in your life since it is unnatural for most people to
notice what they like about their life or about others, especially if they unconsciously use turmoil
in their lives to stimulate their prefrontal cortex!
 Do develop CLEAR GOALS for your life --- relationships, work, money, self --- and reaffirm
 Do FOCUS on what you like a lot more than what you don't like!
 Do MAKE LOVE with your partner regularly
 Do "FULL BRAIN" evaluations for people who do terrible things
Don't do this list of 50 things that can predictably cause you to be dysfunctional in the
clinical sense of being preoccupied with "bad brain habits" since they
are self-destructive and can lead to unhappiness!
 Don't eat without forethought about what foods are best for your brain
APPENDIX --- medication notes (p307-313)
 Don't allow your breathing to get out of control
 Don't think in "black-or-white" terms or "absolute dichotomies" --- use continuums instead!
 Don't think in words like "always, never, every time, everyone," which is distortion by generalization!
 Don't focus on the negative things in your life!
 Don't predict the worst
 Don't think only with your feelings
 Don't try to read other people's minds
 Don't blame other people for your problems
 Don't label yourself or others with negative terms
 Don't beat up yourelf or others with guilt --- since it is a very ineffective emotion
 Don't personalize situations that have little to do with you!
 Don't "feed" your automatic negative thoughts or "ANTs"
 Don't use sex as a weapon with your partner
 Don't talk to others in a hateful way
 Don't push people away from you
 Don't allow your life to just happen without you directing and planning it
 Don't take the "stimulant bait" from other people
 Don't be another person's "stimulant bait"
 Don't allow your thoughts to go over and over in your head
 Don't automatically say "No!" to others --- think first if what they want fits with your goals
 Don't automatically say "Yes!" to others --- think first if what they want fits with your goals
 Don't allow naturally oppositionally children to be oppositional
 Don't listen to toxic music
 Don't blame substance abusers as morally defective
 Don't deny that you have problems
 Don't refuse to listen to the people you love who are trying to tell you to get help
 Don't withhold love, touch and companionship from those you love as a way to express anger
ABOUT THE AMEN CLINIC (p339)