You can transform your world in an instant by the way in which you choose to see it.
Our thoughts are more powerful than we realize. In fact, it is really not the events in our lives that cause us the most difficulty, but our thoughts about those events.
The Event: My husband is late home from work.
My thought: Great, I have more time to finish picking up the house before he gets here.
How do I feel? Maybe relief, excitement?
What is my behavior? Quickly use that adrenaline to go and pick up the house.
Now, look how much changes with a different thought.
My thought: He’s never been this late before without calling. What if he has been in an accident?
How do I feel? Maybe anxiety, worry and stress?
What is my behavior? Try calling his cell phone.
Our thoughts about an event are going to determine our feelings and the actions we choose are based on those thoughts and feelings. Even more astonishing is that the fact that for all of us, many times our thoughts are actually wrong. Our thoughts can become the cause of unnecessary confusion and pain.
In the therapy world, these inaccurate thoughts are termed ‘Cognitive Distortions’ and everyone experiences them to some degree. Cognitive distortions are simply ways that our minds distort reality and convince us of something that isn’t really true.
While there are a myriad of cognitive distortions, below you will find my list of the top 9 cognitive distortions and more importantly the individual strategies to be able to address them.