thought suppression

Topics: Psychology, Thought, Cognition Pages: 2 (619 words) Published: November 19, 2013
Introduction:
All people have unwanted thoughts since this is natural for all humans (Rachman & Da Silva, 1978). Petkus, Gum and Wetherell (2012) stated that “Thought suppression is a strategy to cope with unwanted internal experiences (cognitions or motions) in which the individual actively attempts not to think about the unwanted thought or feeling that they are experiencing.” (pp. 219-225). As Wegner (2011) said, being human means we must suffer from unwanted thoughts. All people have thoughts they want to get rid of, and they would like to manage them by trying to suppress them. However research suggests that this is a very difficult task to accomplish. Because when people are simply asked to try not to think of something, unfortunately they say that thoughts come back repeatedly according to Wegner’s study. Thought suppression has been investigated widely for many years. Most of these studies have been interested in behavioral effects of thought suppression. For example Hooper, Davies, Davies and McHugh (2011) studied thought suppression as a strategy for managing spider fear. Spider fearful people were wanted to complete a Behavioral Approach Test after being exposed to a strategy induction. BAT consists of 10 steps measurements which find the amount of how close participants are willing to move toward spider. The results showed that participants given thought suppression were significantly more anxious than the others. In accordance with previous studies, the aim of this study is to determine if thought suppression is a viable technique for dealing with ones thoughts when trying to hold ones breathe. Broadly, each participant will be asked to hold their breath as long as they can. This first attempt would be their control effort without any instruction. A focus on intentional breathing or attention to breathe was the second attempt in which participants were given a thought suppression intervention as a technique to deal with unwanted thoughts and...
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