18 - Minisode 03: Cognitive Restructuring

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Jul 11 2020 11 mins  

Today's Minisode is on Cognitive Restructuring.


(1) First, select a troubling thought that you are having difficulty letting go.
This could be a worry or an anxiety that has been following you like a dark cloud. I often think I am not good enough to reach a goal, or talented enough to be successful, or smart enough to finish a task. What is bothering you the most right now?

(2) I am going to ask a series of questions that I want you to consider.
We are going to figure out if the thought you have is actually True. 

  • What is the evidence or proof that this thought or fear is true?
  • Is there any evidence that disproves my thought?
  • What is the evidence that this thought may not be true?
  • Are there any facts I’m ignoring or have overlooked?
  • Am I discounting any small things that contradict my thought that I may consider unimportant?
  • Am I using any words that are extreme or exaggerated? Words like “Should, Must, Always, Never”
  • Am I reading someone else’s mind and treating it as fact? 

(3) Now we’re going to examine any other possibilities or possible explanations this thought might have. 

  • Is there any other way to view this idea or thought?
  • If my friend was having this thought, what would I tell them?
  • If my friend knew I was having this thought, what might they say to me?
  • When I’m not feeling this way, do I look at this situation any differently?
  • If I were to look back on this in five years, might I look at it any differently?
  • Am I blaming myself for something I don’t have control over?
  • Have I had any experiences that show that this thought isn’t always true?
  • Am I ignoring any strengths that I have?
  •  Are there any positives that exist in this situation that I haven’t considered?

(4) Now we’re going to think about what you can do to help deal with this thought or situation. 

  • What have I learned from previous experiences that can help me now?
  • When I’ve felt this way in the past, what did I think about that helped me feel better?
  • What’s the worst that could realistically happen?
  • What’s the most likely thing that could happen?
  • If the worst did happen, what could I do to help myself cope?

If you’re still having difficulty or if you’d like more information, visit: https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newTCS_81.htm 

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