Saturday, April 21, 2007

Cognitive Distortions

Cognitive Distortions are ‘traps’ that we can sometimes fall into which may lead to negative believes and reduced self-confidence. It is believed that by recognizing these distortions we can create positive statements to help make the situation less subjective, and thereby prevent decreased self-esteem. These are combined notes from several self-esteem books that may be you may find useful.

All-Or-Nothing: You see things as black or white categories

Overgeneralization: You see single negative events as a never-ending pattern of defeat

Mental Filter: You pick out a single negative detail, and dwell on it exclusively so that you vision of all relative becomes darkened.

Disqualifying the positive: You reject positive experiences by insisting they “don’t count:” for some reason or other. In this way you can maintain a negative belief that is contradicted by your everyday experiences

Jumping to conclusions: You make a negative interpretation even though there are no definite facts to support the conclusion:

Mind reading: You arbitrarily conclude that someone is reacting negatively to you and you don’t bother to check this out

The fortune teller error: You anticipate that things will turn out badly, and you feel convinced that your prediction is already an established fact

Magnification or Minimizing: You exaggerate the importance of things or you inappropriately shrink things until they appear tiny.

Emotional Reasoning: You assume that your negative emotions reflect the way things really are. “I feel it therefore it must be true”

Should statements: You try to motivate yourself with should and must, the emotional consequence causing guilt

Labeling and mislabeling: This is an extreme form of overgeneralization where you attach a negative label to yourself.

Personalization: You see yourself as the cause for some negative external event which in fact you were not primarily responsible for.


Elizabeth said...

Great post Brad

Brad D. said...

Thanks. I've been working through a lot of stuff lateley, so I figured I'd share the things I'm learning.