Aditya Shukla Profile picture
Aug 4 13 tweets 3 min read
Mental health problem-solving based on AVOIDING the "Maslow's Hammer" trap

- If you only know how to use a hammer, everything will look like a nail.

#mentalhealth #behavior #selfhelp #coaching
If you are deep into meditation, it'll look like everything can be solved with meditation.
If you only know about affirmations, you'll use affirmations to solve all personal problems.
If you are obsessed with astrology, you'll see every problem has an astrological solution.
If you can have positive thoughts, you'll think positive thoughts will reset your mind.
If you've learned about diet and nutrition, it'll look like everything can be solved with diet.
True understanding lies in knowing which tool does what
-Meditation: Thought awareness
-Affirmations: Build self-esteem
-Astrology: Insight into chaos + self-definition
-Positive thoughts: Change perspectives
-Diet: Improve body function
-Boundaries: Limit interactions
These mental health tools change the nature of the problem. So at some point, you have to use new tools to address changed problems.

Each tool contributes to the solution. You have to know what contributes the largest when you need it the most.
Examples of Maslow's hammer leading to bad mental health solutions
-Using positive affirmations when your beliefs are very negative (they backfire solidifying negative thoughts)
-Using diet to build self-esteem issues from low professional skills (you need practice)
-Using positive thoughts to protect you from bad behavior (positive thoughts will justify your toxic patterns)
-Using astrology to gain confidence without skill (confidence becomes overconfidence)
-Using boundaries to control others (you need negotiation)
If you continue following Maslow's Hammer, you'll get frustrated or feel worse.

This is when you don't give up. This is when you change the tools.
Method to identify the right tools:
1. Start with sleep, exercise, diet, hygiene, and money.
2. When they fail, use new habits, nature, socializing, hobbies, and learning/achievement.
3. When they fail, use meditation, journaling, thought-stopping techniques, and affirmations.
Another heuristic:
-If you are able to think a lot and analyze, the solution should be behavioral - new habits, routines, and environment.

-If you can't analyze much, learn new concepts, and follow the expert who motivates you to make changes.


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