The following Glossary of Terms is from my book Balancing the Beast, but it is also useful as a helping tool for reading my blogs.


affirmation – An affirmative sentence in the present tense, including only positive terms, intended to change our thinking patterns to more positive ones. For example, you affirm “I am slim.” and not “I am not fat.” One affirms things that will be true, but still uses the present tense. Affirmations are most effective if they are repeated aloud in front of a mirror while looking into one’s eyes (mirror work). See L. Hay’s books.

antipsychotic medication – Medication in the form of pills or injections that stabilizes one’s mood and prevents or eliminates psychotic symptoms: delusions, hallucinations, paranoia, megalomaniacal ideas, and insomnia. Another term for this kind of medication is neuroleptica.

antipsychotic pills, see antipsychotic medication

bipolar disorder – A new term for manic-depression. See also schizoaffective disorder below.

CBT, see cognitive-behavioral therapy

cognitive-behavioral therapy – A type of psychotherapy which is used to help people change their thoughts, feelings, and behaviors that are causing them problems. See also thinking patterns below.

destigmatization – Refers to various ways of raising public awareness of mental illness in order to remove the stigma from it. Stigma entails the shame felt by those who have the illness and the contempt shown to those who know the mental patients. Such stigma also lowers the chances of getting a job, a life partner, etc.

episode – In this book you can find expressions such as mental illness episode, schizoaffective disorder episode, SchAD episode, and psychotic episode. In the context of this book they mean the same thing. A mental illness episode is like being struck by a physical illness. It is a period of time during which the symptoms of the mental illness are very severe.

imagery, see visualization

inner child – A psychological term. It usually stands for the playful aspect of our personality, on one hand, and for the painful memories from our childhood, on the other hand.

mental exercise – Any exercise that helps us improve our thinking patterns. The usual types of mental exercises are: repeating positive sentences (affirmations), imagining positive scenes (visualizations), having positive sentences written on walls, different types of yoga meditation, etc. See also thinking patterns below.

mental work, see mental exercise

mirror exercises, see affirmation

mirror work, see affirmation

Phyllis Krystal method – A method developed by Phyllis Krystal can help us cut the ties that bind us to anyone or anything that acts as an authority and exerts control over us. Detachment from such control will allow us to remove the accumulated layers of conditioning which obscure the inner light of the Higher Consciousness (Hi C) or Real Self. The exercises that are contained in this method can help to free us from everything that prevents the Real Self from being expressed through the exterior shell or receptacle comprising the body, mind, personality, and ego.

post-psychotic emptiness – The lack of energy and intense death wish that follows a mental illness episode (see episode above).

SchAD, see schizoaffective disorder

schizoaffective disorder – You can look up more professional definitions on the internet, but let me give you a very simplified version here. For me, schizoaffective disorder – bipolar type is a combination of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. Bipolar disorder is called bi-polar, because it includes both manic (excessive happiness and self-worth feelings) and depressive (excessive sadness and emptiness) symptoms. Furthermore, hallucinations, paranoia, and other delusions are typical of schizophrenia. There are two types of schizoaffective disorder. There is the above mentioned bipolar type, and another one called depressive type. The second type lacks manic symptoms – that is the most important difference between the two types.

thinking patterns – Ways of thinking that affect your emotions, words, and deeds. If you manage to improve your ways of thinking, your emotions, words, and deeds will change for the better too. Let me give you an example. I have a thinking pattern called perfectionism, which means that I think that I have to be perfect. Since this is impossible, I am always disappointed. Then, through mental exercises I manage to change my thinking pattern to: “It is fine if I am good enough.” That way I will approve of myself in most situations (emotion). I will say to myself “Well done.” more often (words). And I will be more self-assured when taking action, for the fear of failure will be reduced (emotion). Consequently I will take more action and procrastinate less (deeds). See also mental exercise above.

visualization – A nice scene one imagines in order to calm down or to change one’s thinking patterns into more positive ones. Visualizations are typical of yoga meditation, autogenic training (Western medicine approach), the Phyllis Krystal method, and many other approaches. Another word for this is imagery.




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