100 day exercise: CBM - Social Anxiety Forum
 
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-16-2014, 04:45 AM Thread Starter
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100 day exercise: CBM


Cognitive Bias Modification

A couple of days ago I began a 100 day Cognitive Bias Modification (CBM) exercise. I started a thread about CBM over here. This new thread consolidates my thinking about CBM to-date, and it is where I will report my findings every so often.

Some Important Notes

[1] This thread is merely a record of a personal experiment that I am undertaking to see if my results correspond with the results conducted by researchers (see the next post).
[2] I am not affiliated in any way with any company, commercial interests or research organisation.
[3] There is no financial fee or any other obligation should you decide to join me and participate in the CBM exercise.
[4] If you decide to join me and begin CBM yourself, there are no guarantees that CBM will decrease your anxiety.
[5] **I welcome constructive criticism and discussion, but any trolling posts will be deleted by admin. So please consider your posts carefully.

The CBM exercise

You can find the CBM exercise here. It takes between 5 and 10 minutes to complete, just keep clicking until the exercise tells you the session is complete.

I myself do the exercise once in the morning and once in the evening, and will be doing so for a full 100 days. Why 100 days? It has been said that the 100 days (or sessions) is the point at which the new changes are automatic.

If you wish to join me and undertake the exercise yourself, then I welcome your participation at this thread.

And a warning, some people will find the exercise boring, but don’t let the subtlety of it make you think no good can come of it, the brain/mind is a mysterious creature. Take some time to read up on CBM theory and research findings (see the next post), and you will understand why CBM has been a successful therapeutic tool, which in turn may encourage a commitment to the task.

The logic behind the “friendly face” (CBM) exercise,……..as I understand it.

The socially confident person is aware of negative facial cues from people but they either ignore or give little attention to such cues. Instead they tend to focus upon positive facial cues (both real and imagined) and thus experience and interpret “everyday” social encounters as overall friendly and non-threatening. That is they have a positive bias regarding social interaction.

The socially anxious person in contrast tends to disregard positive facial cues and instead is very aware of negative facial cues (both real and imagined), giving them the most attention, dwelling upon them and overemphasising them. Thus they tend to experience and interpret “everyday” social encounters as threatening and anxiety inducing. That is they have a negative bias regarding social interaction.

The “friendly face” exercise trains the brain to ignore negative facial cues and instead teaches you to give all your attention to positive facial cues. In so doing it weakens the negative bias and strengthens the positive bias; ie. forms the positive bias habit that comes naturally to the socially confident person.
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-16-2014, 04:48 AM Thread Starter
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CBM Research

[1] (link)

After just eight 15-minute sessions — a mere two hours of active treatment — 72 percent of patients in the treatment group no longer met diagnostic criteria for social anxiety disorder, compared with 11 percent of patients in the control group. Even more startling, the diagnostic differences were still evident at a follow-up exam four months later.

[2] (link)

BACKGROUND:
Cognitive Bias Modification (CBM) is a promising treatment for Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD). However, previous randomized trials have not systematically examined the combination of CBM for attention (CBM-A) and interpretation (CBM-I) or the credibility and acceptability of these protocols.

CONCLUSIONS:
A combined CBM treatment produced medium-to-large effects on social anxiety. Participants rated AIM as moderately credibly and acceptable. Should these findings be replicated in larger samples, AIM has the potential to be a widely accessible and efficacious treatment for SAD.


[3] (link)

Modifying threat related biases in attention and interpretation has been shown to successfully reduce global symptoms of anxiety in high anxious and clinically anxious samples (termed Cognitive Bias Modification, CBM). However, the possibility that CBM can be used as a way to prevent anxiety associated with an upcoming real-life stressful event in vulnerable populations has yet to be systematically examined. The present study aimed to assess whether a two-week course of online CBM for interpretations (CBM-I) could reduce social evaluative fear when starting university. Sixty-nine students anxious about starting university completed five sessions of online CBM in the two weeks prior to starting university, or completed a placebo control intervention. Results indicated that CBM-I reduced social evaluative fear from baseline to day one of starting university to a greater extent than the placebo control intervention. Also, there was a greater reduction in state anxiety and a trend indicating a greater reduction in social evaluative fear in the CBM-I group at 4 weeks follow-up. Results suggest that CBM-I could be used as a preventative tool to help reduce anxiety specific to challenging life events.
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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-16-2014, 04:52 AM Thread Starter
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CBM Research

[4]
(link)

Background and objectives:
This study examines the effects of a single session of Cognitive Bias Modification to induce positive Interpretative bias (CBM-I) using standard or explicit instructions and an analogue of computer-administered CBT (c-CBT) program on modifying cognitive biases and social anxiety.

Results:
Participants in both CBM-I programs (either standard or explicit instructions) and the c-CBT condition exhibited more positive interpretations of ambiguous social scenarios at post-test and one-week follow-up as compared to the Control condition. Moreover, the results showed that CBM-I and c-CBT, to some extent, changed negative attention biases in a positive direction. Furthermore, the results showed that both CBM-I training conditions and c-CBT reduced social anxiety symptoms at one-week follow-up.

Conclusions:
A computerised single session of CBM-I and an analogue of c-CBT program reduced negative interpretative biases and social anxiety.


[5] (link)

People with psychotic disorders often suffer from social anxiety and self-stigmatization. Various interventions have been developed to tackle these problems, with varying effects. A promising new method is cognitive bias modification (CBM), a type of therapeutic training that targets and ultimately aims to modify harmful cognitive biases to provide a “cognitive vaccine” against negative appraisals. Research has shown that CBM training is effective in decreasing social anxiety among healthy persons with mild anxiety problems. Preliminary research results show that CBM is also a promising intervention for treating social anxiety and self-deprecating thoughts among patients suffering from psychosis. However, CBM training traditionally is a repetitive and boring computer task, and engaging patients to participate can be difficult.


[6] (link)

Cognitive bias modification encompasses a series of techniques that can alleviate anxiety or depression. In particular, according to this paradigm, anxiety and depression emanates from biases in the attention, memory, and interpretations of individuals. For example, anxious individuals tend to orient their attention to unpleasant features. Depressed individuals are inclined to remember adverse events. Cognitive bias modification entails a set of practices that reverse these biases and, therefore, ameliorate mood disorders.

Specifically, according to proponents of cognitive bias modification, anxiety and depression can be ascribed to three clusters of biases. The first set of biases relate to attention. That is, if people are anxious in particular, they are more likely to orient their attention to negative words or images. The second set of biases relate to interpretation. When people are anxious or depressed, they are more inclined to misconstrue an ambiguous remark or event: They may, for example, assume the sentence "The doctor measured little Emma's growth" alludes to a tumor instead of her height. The final set of biases relate to memory. When individuals are depressed, they are more inclined to recognize sad faces as well as remember past failures or negative traits.

Various exercises can be undertaken to redress these biases. One set of exercises involves attention training. Typically, participants must locate a positive object, such as a happy face, that is embedded in a series of negative objects, such as angry faces. Another set of exercises involve interpretation training. As one example, participants may need to complete word fragment, such as f-ar, which appear at the end of sentences, such as "After a while, you lose your f-ar". If these word fragments tend to reflect positive outcomes, anxiety tends to diminish. Finally, some exercises involve memory training.

An excellent example of attention training was reported by Dandeneau, Baldwin, Baccus, Sakellaropoulo, and Pruessner (2007). In their study, participants completed a computer task in which they receive sets of 16 faces on a computer screen. Their task was to identify the person who is smiling rather than frowning. After undertaking this task for 10 or so minutes, measures of social anxiety dissipated, and cortisol levels diminished as well (for neurological underpinnings, especially with reference to lateral regions of the prefrontal cortex, see Browning, Holmes, Murphy, Goodwin, & Harmer, 2010).


[7] (link)

Why do some people see their glass as half-empty rather than half-full or even imagine that the glass will be filled in the future? Experimental methods can illuminate how individual differences in information processing style can profoundly impact mood or even result in disorders such as depression. A computerized cognitive bias modification intervention targeting interpretation bias in depression via positive mental imagery (CBM-I) was evaluated by investigating its impact on mental health and cognitive bias compared with a control condition. Twenty-six depressed individuals completed either positive imagery-focussed CBM-I or a control condition daily at home over one week. Outcome measures were collected pre-treatment and post-treatment and at two-week follow-up. Individuals in the positive condition demonstrated significant improvements from pre-treatment to post-treatment in depressive symptoms, cognitive bias and intrusive symptoms compared with the control condition. Improvements in depressive symptoms at two-week follow-up were at trend level. The results of this first controlled comparison of positive imagery-focussed CBM-I for depression further support the clinical potential of CBM-I and the development of a novel computerized treatment that could help patients imagine a more positive future. Broader implications concern the modification of individual differences in personality variables via their interaction with key information processing targets.
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-16-2014, 05:25 AM
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Project: doing the CBM exercise 2 times a day for a 100 days straight. I will also be running another cognitive project for these 100 days where I write Down atleast 5 positive Things that happend of the day and then atleast 5 Things Im generally grateful of in life. Im going to list all the days here in this comment and else mark it with an 'X' for the days I missed out on(hopefully none).

Project Start: Monday 18. August 2014
Project End: Tuesday 25. November 2014
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-16-2014, 02:44 PM Thread Starter
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good stuff jever , and good luck to both of us

let the games begin


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Originally Posted by jever View Post
Project: doing the CBM exercise 2 times a day for a 100 days straight. I will also be running another cognitive project for these 100 days where I write Down atleast 5 positive Things that happend of the day and then atleast 5 Things Im generally grateful of in life. Im going to list all the days here in this comment and else mark it with an 'X' for the days I missed out on(hopefully none).

Project Start: Friday 15. August 2014
Project End: Tuesday 25. November 2014

Day1 -
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-17-2014, 01:22 AM Thread Starter
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from the makers of the CBM exerice at post 1

(link)
Worries and concerns regarding social rejection can be highly stressful and disruptive. In the school context in particular, such concerns and distractions can undermine confidence and interfere with performance. We therefore attempted to train a particular cognitive habit, of inhibiting thoughts of rejection, to see if this might help students deal with failure and social rejection. The participants were 150 students from adult education centres. They were first trained using our computer game, which was designed to help them practice disengaging from images of socially threatening faces, and focusing their attention on socially supportive faces. Afterwards, they were put in a difficult task situation where they underwent failure and social rejection.

The results showed playing the find-the-smile "Matrix" game (as opposed to a control condition in which participants searched for nonsocial stimuli) was helpful to people; particularly those starting the study with relatively low self-esteem. The attentional training led them to feel less rejected and, on a computerized reaction-time task, they were less distracted by rejection-related stimuli. Also, participants who played the find-the-smile "Matrix" game reported fewer interfering thoughts about rejection while they were working on a school-related task, and went on to show higher self-esteem scores after that task.

http://tinyurl.com/oy56fad
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-20-2014, 03:54 PM Thread Starter
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anyone else doing the exercise each day?

http://tinyurl.com/oy56fad
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-20-2014, 04:06 PM
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No, but this is a fabulous idea and I think i'll try it out.

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Or pokes if you prefer.
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-20-2014, 04:12 PM Thread Starter
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laysiaj

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Originally Posted by laysiaj View Post
No, but this is a fabulous idea and I think i'll try it out.

http://tinyurl.com/oy56fad
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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-20-2014, 05:50 PM
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I'll try it. I got the app on my phone.
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-20-2014, 05:57 PM
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What's the name of the app?

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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-20-2014, 06:16 PM
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What's the name of the app?
Psych me up
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-20-2014, 06:35 PM Thread Starter
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is it the same as the one linked in post 1?......just curious

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I'll try it. I got the app on my phone.

http://tinyurl.com/oy56fad
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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-21-2014, 09:50 AM
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is it the same as the one linked in post 1?......just curious
Yes
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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-21-2014, 01:52 PM
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just to check if Im doing this right and not wasting time. I go to the link and up comes a 4x4 system with a total of 16 faces of both men and women of different races. I find the one that smiles and click on his/hers face and the Picture switches and now I have to find someone else there is smiling and clicking on his/her face Again. And its the same 16 persons all the time, also when Im doing the exercise another time.

Right?
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post #16 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-21-2014, 02:00 PM Thread Starter
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that's exactly how it works for me

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Originally Posted by jever View Post
just to check if Im doing this right and not wasting time. I go to the link and up comes a 4x4 system with a total of 16 faces of both men and women of different races. I find the one that smiles and click on his/hers face and the Picture switches and now I have to find someone else there is smiling and clicking on his/her face Again. And its the same 16 persons all the time, also when Im doing the exercise another time.

Right?

http://tinyurl.com/oy56fad
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post #17 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-21-2014, 03:01 PM
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that's exactly how it works for me
cool. Well have done this exercise for a week now and it sure is easier to find the happy faces compared to day 1 and 2, but it might just be because its the same 16 faces Again and Again. Maybe they should have done this with like a 100 different faces and then switch some out from time to time. Dunno.
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post #18 of 19 (permalink) Old 08-21-2014, 03:38 PM Thread Starter
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you might be right, although the smiling face changes randomly

i suspect the idea is, if its getting easier, its because your positive bias is getting stronger (social confidence) and your negative bias is getting weaker (social anxiety)........at least that's the theory as i understand it

nevertheless, the real test will be a decreased anxiety in those situations that tend to generate anxiety


Quote:
Originally Posted by jever View Post
cool. Well have done this exercise for a week now and it sure is easier to find the happy faces compared to day 1 and 2, but it might just be because its the same 16 faces Again and Again. Maybe they should have done this with like a 100 different faces and then switch some out from time to time. Dunno.

http://tinyurl.com/oy56fad
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post #19 of 19 (permalink) Old 12-20-2014, 04:48 PM
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Want to make a start in the social anxiety disorder CBM


I am having social anxiety and want to get rid of this,

i want to do the 100 days CBM

Wil someone please respond to me.
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