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Stress and Cardiovascular Problems

There are ways to mediate stress, the awareness of maladaptive schemes*, these, adopted daily and over the years of our existence.

At Psy-Noord Psychotherapie we emphasize the benefits that can be gained from psychotherapy.

We help the patient to interpret such maladaptive schemas to combat the impact of stress.

Today psychotherapy should be accepted as supportive therapy to maintain mental AND physical health. This is because, as we all know, a weakened mental health also weakens our immune system making it more susceptible to developing various diseases including chronic ones.

*Maladaptive Schemas - What Are They?

Schemas are a set of fundamental beliefs and feelings that the individual has about himself or his surroundings, which the individual accepts without putting in question. This constitutes a central basis for their intrapsychic and behavioral functioning.

Schemas originate in childhood, constructed through inadequate or misdirected education. After they are formed, we are hardly able to “destroy” them on our own, since most of the time we are not aware of them. Since its functioning is most often unconscious.

An individual can have more than one schema simultaneously, but as a rule, there is always one that overlaps all others. The schemas result in dysfunctional thoughts and behaviors, hence the name "maladaptive schemas".

This theory assumes that much of the psychological distress as well as some mental illnesses may originate from schemas. Thus, this schema-focused cognitive-behavioral therapy is increasingly popular, as well as the conceptualization of cases through them.

There are 18 maladaptive schemes, divided into 5 major domains:

Disconnection and Rejection – Related to the frustration experienced by the person regarding expectations of safety, affection, empathy, sharing, acceptance, (among others) towards other people. To this group are linked 5 schemes: abandonment; emotional deprivation; abuse/distrust; social isolation, and shame/defectiveness.

Impaired Autonomy and Performance – Related to the incapacity experienced by the individual, making it impossible for him to be autonomous, surviving independently and performing well. This group is associated with 4 schemes: failure; incompetence/dependence; vulnerability to harm or illness, and entanglement.

Impaired Limits – Related to poorly defined internal limits, lack of responsibility towards others and/or difficulty in guiding the achievement of distant goals. Also characterized by the inability to respect the limits and rights of others. Two schemes are linked to this group: entitlement/grandiosity and impaired self-control/self-discipline.

Orientation to the Other – It is related to the excessive focus on the needs, desires and feelings of others in favor of the constant search to obtain love. Often, the person suppresses or neglects their own needs in order to gain the approval of others. To this group are linked 2 schemes: subjugation and self-sacrifice.

Overvigilance and Inhibition – Refers to blocking happiness, self-expression, intimate relationships, relaxation and compromising your own health, due to excessive inhibition of your feelings, impulses, personal choices and spontaneity. This was due to internalized rules and expectations, which were too rigid, regarding their performance and behavior. Linked to this group are 4 schemas: emotional inhibition, unrelenting standards, negativity/pessimism, and punitiveness.

Schemas maintain themselves, that is, having a schema will influence the way you act, think and interact with others. And unconsciously, the individual will contribute to its verification and consequently its perpetuation, even if this makes him suffer deeply.

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