I went to therapy last week without a lot of expectations. I was having a rough week, and I was looking forward to just finishing the session and then attending an event I was excited for. I thought of the session as just another chore I have to finish, which in some ways it is, actually.
However, my doctor and I actually went through some interesting stuff. I’m not going to call it mindblowing because it’s really not. I often find that people overexaggerate what they learn in therapy, but that’s based on my experience. I have found out that, for me at least, I learn more about the different alternate ways to solve problems, not necessarily THE Ultimate Way, but things I can try that could end up well.
Anyway, I really wanted it to be over, but I also knew that I kind of had to take it seriously, so I started talking about the past month, some significant moments, how my eating has been. We have been addressing Mistaken Beliefs for a few sessions now, but this was the first one that we tackled so directly.
You see, I grew up thinking that my self-worth and my value is measured by my accomplishments. This belief was exacerbated by me having to create a resume for class. I already was terrified of coming into terms with the fact that–in terms of a list of accomplishments–I didn’t really have much to show for it. And so, we talked about that.
As a solution, we came up with three main questions I can ask myself if I catch my mind thinking this way:
- Is this true? Is there any evidence for this? Are the sources for this evidence credible or are they biased?
- Is this way of thinking contributing to my overall well-being? Does it benefit me to think this way?
- Am I being objective? Am I seeing the whole picture?
Of course, these aren’t going to work for everyone, and these won’t solve all my problems, but I do think they’re a good starting point for me to think about the way I think and address my concerns.
Maybe the next time you get into your negative self-talk, you can employ these questions as well.