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recalling memories puts them in a labile state - so you activate painful memories in a calm state - so you associate that memory with more calm as it is re-encoded - also enhances details of the trauma so you don't generalize as much to similar stimuli.

exposure therapy - you can't intellectualize, you need to actually feel the emotion in order to be able to make therapeutic changes - they HAVE to sit with the discomfort for it to be efficacious. safety behaviors diminish the effect.

distancing is a safety behavior.

more powerful to put it in the present tense when they retell, so there isn't a distancing effect.

this makes me think about how my best sessions with Alex felt like being dragged over hot coals. not where I would talk nonstop. you have to sit and feel. sit and feel. silence is OK.


OK so wait - if exercises boosts neurogenesis, and neurogenesis in the hippocampus helps you create new memories - does that aid with forming new memories in exposure therapy, which help you get through the anxiety? this might be something to look at in grad school.

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