Fresco Et Al. ) Self -- Regulation Article Review

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Fresco et al. (2007)

Self -- regulation consists of a number of cognitive and behavioral strategies that an individual engages in an order to maintain homeostasis, direct one's behavior, control one's reactions, or develop and reach goals. These strategies or processes can either be implemented in a conscious directed fashion or unconscious automatic fashion Fresco et al. (2007). In the current study the process of emotional regulation is defined as mental processes that individuals use to fine-tune, moderate, or outright change their emotional responses in accordance with the environment (Fresco et al., 2007). The notion of emotional regulation has been important in the development of understanding of models of abnormal behavior and mental illness including models of understanding substance abuse, eating disorders, depression, anxiety disorders, etc. Past research has associated the ability to regulate one's emotions with positive health, good personal relationships, and better performances and work. Individuals who experience problems regulating their emotions are more likely to develop mental disorders (Fresco et al., 2007).

Decentering is the capacity to be able to conceive the thoughts and feelings that one experiences as being temporary events instead of truths about oneself. Fresco et al. (2007) offer the example of how a person would use decentering as a strategy of emotional regulation. Instead of thinking something like "I am depressed" a person using decentering would alter this automatic thought to "I am thinking that I feel depressed at this moment." When a person uses decentering they become focused on the moment and do not make an overarching statement regarding their feelings. Using decentering as an emotional regulation strategy removes one from making universal, judgmental statements based on their momentary thoughts and feelings and can lead to in a more objective assessment of oneself and the situation. This can be a positive strategy that a counselor can teach to clients during the use of cognitively-based psychotherapeutic techniques.

Learning decentering can also be an important aspect of mindfulness. The counselor would need to assess decentering both before the counseling sessions and afterwards in order to determine the person's initial tendencies and improvement as a result of counseling. This would acquire an empirically -- validated measure of the decentering that counselors could use in their practice. The Experiences Questionnaire (EQ) is a measure of decentering and rumination that was developed to be use in practice. Fresco et al. (2007) performed three different studies to determine if the capital EQ could be empirically -- validated as a useful measure of decentering for counselors.

In the first study Fresco et al. (2007) attempted to validate the two hypothesized subscales of the EQ: a rumination subscale and a wider perspective subscale. The statistical technique of choice for this validation was confirmatory factor analysis (CFA). Data was obtained… [end of preview; READ MORE]

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