The 2d step in challenging anxiety provoking thought traps (1 minute read)
This post “The 2d step in challenging anxiety provoking thought traps” is about how you can manage anxiety by understanding more about thought traps.
There are many anxiety inducing patterns often called cognitive distortions or thought traps. These are ways of thinking that seem true but are in fact not reasonable, realistic or relevant to the situation.
Noticing when we are using thought traps and countering them is an important part of traditional CBT-exercises that also can reduce symptoms of anxiety.
A cognitive distortion is active in our minds when we experience an upsetting event and we think about it in these ways.
Last week’s post was about the first step to challenge cognitive distortions by identifying what the problem is and how extensive it is.
The second step is to examine the evidence of the thoughts you identified.
Using more objective criteria helps you not being carried away by emotions that are triggered by an irrational or skewed thought.
One more objective criteria can be to analyse if the thought is a fact or an opinion or guessing. One way of discerning this is to think about whether others would agree – you can even ask them.
Another way is to think about the likelihood of the thought being accurate.
A third way is to list alternative explanations and then weight them against the thought.
More about this in the next post on this topic.
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