How to stop thinking on a pattern
Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) helps us scan mistakes in thinking, get rid of stereotypes and make useful conclusions from situations. Cognition (cognitio) is translated from the Latin “I recognize”. This approach teaches people a multi-faceted vision of the world, teaches us to look at this or that situation from different perspectives.
But let's not go deep into the theory, but let's see how everything happens in practice. Especially because basically from practice, namely behavioral experiments, this method also consists. Experiments, at first glance, may seem absurd, unusual, until we see their goal and, of course, the result.
For example, a number of people suffer from fear of appearing other stupid and stupid. They are instructed to go to the metro station N and ask the metro staff where station N is located. As a result, all the participants in the experiment come to the conclusion that no one raised their voice on them, no one called them stupid, no one humiliated, and so on. It turns out that we think a lot about ourselves.A lot of things.
Another example. If a person is afraid to be in a public place, the psychotherapist asks him to visit this place and do something there. For example, dine in a cafe or buy something in a hypermarket at rush hour.
Exercises help to remember new skills and step by step to change their behavior. A person, fulfilling these tasks, learns to be less categorical, learns to look at the situation from different sides, becomes free from public opinion, learns to listen to himself and not others, begins to be friends with himself, respect himself, ceases to condemn others.
What does KPT work with?
With fears, depression, panic attacks, social anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), eating disorders, low self-esteem.
How is KPT performed?
In groups, more often with family, or individually with a therapist.
And can you?
Yes, you can get acquainted with the CBT by performing certain exercises, although you will get the best result when working with a specialist.
Perhaps, you already met similar exercises on our portal. So, let's begin?
Exercise 1. Combating the fear of social disapproval
Situation: you are very fond of cooking, but suffer from fear that relatives will not like the food. They absorb your culinary creation and remain silent. At this time, all sorts of joyless thoughts rush through your head: “They don’t like”, “I’ve been unsatisfied”, “I’ve oversold”, “I seem to them stupid”. And the heart beats more and more.
What to do?
- To ask yourself the question: “Is this situation a danger to my life?” Naturally, you will answer “no”, which means that fear is false, associated with errors of thinking.
- Ask yourself the question: “Why do I need the approval of my relatives in preparing the dish?” After all, if the food was unsuccessful — oversalted, underdone, dryish, someone would definitely tell you about it. And if they are silent, it means that everything turned out all right.
- Smile at the fact that you are waiting for praise where you should not expect it.
Exercise 2. Combating the fear of natural emotions
Situation: you are afraid to show others your anxiety or fear by putting on a mask of carelessness and eternal success. As a result, nothing good comes out: you are even more worried, make hasty conclusions, perform unnecessary actions, lose time, suffer from psychosomatics, etc.
What to do?
- To ask yourself the question: “Is my tactic advantageous?” Naturally, you will answer “no,” or maybe add that “this tactic fails even more,” “those around me get worse and worse, do not have support.” And how will they understand you if you are dishonest with them?
- To realize that experiencing fear and anxiety is normal and natural. We are not robots. Therefore, you should not be ashamed, afraid of your emotions.
- To realize that the fear of the manifestation of these emotions is groundless and empty.
- And that the fear has disappeared completely, it is necessary to fairly admit to associates that you are now worried, a little afraid and ask you to support. People appreciate such honesty, but to support: clapping your hands (if you are speaking to an audience), hugging you (if you are talking to loved ones) is not at all difficult.
Exercise 3. Dealing with stress using the “Wag” technique
Sit on a chair or chair. Close your eyes. Imagine that in your hands you hold two photos or pictures. In your left hand you have a photograph that reflects your stress. Mentally draw on it what you think is necessary. And in your right hand you have a photo reflecting some pleasant situation, a situation in which you feel a surge of strength, feel pleasure towards yourself, feel harmony with the world.
Mentally look at the left photograph, then on the right. And then with lightning speed, with a wave of your mind, put a negative picture on your knee so that you stop seeing this image and raise the positive frame to your eye level.
If a negative photo still interferes with looking at a positive one, but has already turned pale or diminished, you are doing everything right. Just keep repeating the exercise: put a negative picture on your left knee, and lift a beautiful picture in front of you. Wave a positive card until the negative disappears from your perception.
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