In this episode of the Self Esteem Podcast we discuss how to start changing your thinking patterns. Here’s some of the stuff we cover:
Tools To Promote Change
- Childlike Curiosity—wonder, Christmas and bugs etc…
- Experimentation—willingness to try things just to see what will happen.
- Best vs. right—you may not have all the information, make the best decision with the information you have at the time. Total certainty is not possible. Headlight principle.
- Acceptance—Instead of trying to talk yourself out of thinking or feeling what you’re feeling, you can simply accept that this issue is what you’re struggling with and trust that a solution will make itself clear to you.
10 Cognitive Distortions
- All-or-Nothing Thinking—Using terms like “always” “never” “every”. If your performance falls short in any way, you view yourself as a TOTAL failure
- Overgeneralization—Seeing a single negative event as a never ending pattern of defeat.
- Mental Filter—Focusing exclusively on certain, usually negative or upsetting, aspects of something while ignoring the rest.
- Disqualifying The Positive—Continually “shooting down” positive experiences for arbitrary, ad hoc reasons. “Good stuff doesn’t count”.
- Jumping To Conclusions—Assuming something negative where there is actually no evidence to support it. Mind Reading – assuming the intentions of others. You arbitrarily conclude that someone is reacting negatively to you, and you don’t bother to check it out. Fortune Telling – anticipating that things will turn out badly, you feel convinced that your prediction is an already established fact.
- Magnification and Minimization—Often the positive characteristics of other people are exaggerated and negatives understated. Catastrophizing – focusing on the worst possible outcome, however unlikely. Thinking that a situation is unbearable or impossible when it is really just uncomfortable: “I can’t stand this.”
- Emotional Reasoning—Making decisions and arguments based on how you feel rather than objective reality.
- Shoulding—Concentrating on what you think “should” or ought to be rather than the actual situation.
- Labeling and Mislabeling—Rather than describing the specific behavior, you assign a label to someone or yourself that puts them in absolute and unalterable negative terms.
- Personalization and Blame—Personalization occurs when you hold yourself personally responsible for an event that isn’t entirely under your control. Blaming other people or their circumstances for their problems, and overlooking ways that they might be contributing to the problem.
How To Change Your Mind Map
If you want to start changing your negative self image, it’s best to do that in the moment. Here are the areas you’re going to want to examine. Use this worksheet to help capture the negative thoughts.
- Cause and Effect—Owning and being responsible for your experiences. Most people are at effect most of the time. Most people believe that stuff is being done to them. Your boss is the reason your job is bad. Being at “cause” is taking 100% of the responsibility for the things that happen in your life. You may not ACTUALLY be responsible, but if you act as if you are, then you’ll experience empowerment instead of helplessness. You’ll take the action necessary to achieve your goals.
- Results vs. Excuses—Avoiding reasons why you don’t have what you want. If the reward is great enough we overcome our excuses. Excuses are usually related to limiting beliefs you have.
- Perception is Projection—The external world that you see is actually a projection of your mind based upon the heavily cut down stream of information filtered through all your expectations and desires. You only see what you expect to see.
- Mind/body Connection—Thoughts affect our physical body. How you talk to yourself will not only affect your behavior and your results but also have a critical affect on your health—your physical well being.
- Responsibility for Results—You are able to respond however you like. You are 100% responsible for your world. No one can create the results for you.