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 Post subject: Help me with my twisted thinking please!
PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2008 5:25 pm 
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1. Identify The Distortion: Write down your negative thoughts so you can see which of the ten cognitive distortions you're involved in. This will make it easier to think about the problem in a more positive and realistic way.
I want to avoid therapy because of how I feel about my therapist. I love him, not romantically, but just because I've known him for about 6 years and all he's done and just because we know each other. I want to avoid because I'm thinking this can't be good for me to have feelings for him, but I can't put him in a different place in my mind, so in spite of the help I get I'm thinking I should just let my depression/illness take over and stay in bed, stay in the house, avoid him and everybody else because I don't want to be hurt and I know I can't feel or find love in any form.

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2. Examine The Evidence: Instead of assuming that your negative thought is true, examine the actual evidence for it. For example, if you feel that you never do anything right, you could list several things you have done successfully.

Usually when I speak openly with my T things work out and I feel better. Sometime they don't and my T is blunt and I get hurt though.

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3. The Double-Standard Method: Instead of putting yourself down in a harsh, condemning way, talk to yourself in the same compassionate way you would talk to a friend with a similar problem.

As if I were talking to a friend: Talk to your T and try to be open. Try to fill the gaps with other friendships where love is more available. You can still have a warm caring relationship with your T, but it is limited for your own good, for you, for your benefit.

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4. The Experimental Technique: Do an experiment to test the validity of your negative thought. For example, if during an episode of panic, you become terrified that you're about to die of a heart attack, you could jog or run up and down several flights of stairs. This will prove that your heart is healthy and strong.

I guess this would add up to actually talking to my T and trying to work through this, my fears, my loneliness, my depression, how to change my life.

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5. Thinking In Shades Of Grey: Although this method may sound drab, the effects can be illuminating. Instead of thinking about your problems in all-or-nothing extremes, evaluate things on a scale of 0 to 100. When things don't work out as well as you hoped, think about the experience as a partial success rather than a complete failure. See what you can learn from the situation.

Maybe this would constitute accepting my T for who he is and accepting the limits of therapy rather having to have all or nothing, or not going at all.

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6. The Survey Method: Ask people questions to find out if your thoughts and attitudes are realistic. For example, if you feel that public speaking anxiety is abnormal and shameful, ask several friends if they ever felt nervous before they gave a talk.

Not sure how to answer this one.

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7. Define Terms: When you label yourself 'inferior' or 'a fool' or 'a loser,' ask, "What is the definition of 'a fool'?" You will feel better when you realize that there is no such thing as 'a fool' or 'a loser.'

Label: Needy = want something from outside myself.

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8. The Semantic Method: Simply substitute language that is less colorful and emotionally loaded. This method is helpful for 'should statements.' Instead of telling yourself, "I shouldn't have made that mistake," you can say, "It would be better if I hadn't made that mistake."

Ok, maybe it would be better if I wasn't so needy, but I think I can work on this. Can I?

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9. Re-attribution: Instead of automatically assuming that you are "bad" and blaming yourself entirely for a problem, think about the many factors that may have contributed to it. Focus on solving the problem instead of using up all your energy blaming yourself and feeling guilty.
Ok, help....

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10. Cost-Benefit Analysis: List the advantages and disadvantages of a feeling (like getting angry when your plane is late), a negative thought (like "No matter how hard I try, I always screw up"), or a behavior pattern (like overeating and lying around in bed when you're depressed). You can also use the cost benefit analysis to modify a self-defeating belief such as, "I must always try to be perfect."


Dunno what to say.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 13, 2008 6:01 pm 
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Some thoughts.

You don't have to do all 10 methods of twisted thinking. There's 10 ways, because in one situation one way works, in another situation, another way works.

Also, on number one, you wrote down your thoughts, but you didn't identify the distortion. Number one means using the 10 forms of twisted thinking.

Though, like I said, that's only one of the 10 ways to untwist your thinking, and you don't have to do all 10.

On number 6, it's not something you answer, it's something you do. If you wanted to do that one, you would ask people. Like when a person starts a thread here about something where their thinking may be twisted and asks for other viewpoints, they are using the survey method.

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