Posted 6/12/2008 10:27 PM (#6546) Subject: Combating negative thought distortions
Hi! I'm a member of several online forums, including some for depression, bipolar, and BPD support. I try to be as positive and I can and still radically honest in all areas of my life.
One person on another forum shared this list of 20 common negative thought distortions. I'm providing them here. I'd like to see some positive responses to these thoughts, some affirmations to memorize and share for when these thoughts sneak back in! I am sure that the students and friends of UMS, having studied personal transformation and learned so much through meditation, will have interesting responses.
My goal is to make a list of POSITIVE thoughts to share with people who may need them.
So here is the list. No one has to match one positive to each negative, it's not a to-do list, but it's a sample of what negative thinking looks and feels like. Not happy is it?
1. I will always be alone.
2. There is no one who really cares about me, who will be available to help me, and whom I can fall back on.
3. If others really get to know me, they will find me rejectable and will not be able to love me; and they will leave me.
4. I can't manage by myself, I need someone I can fall back on.
5. I have to adapt my needs to other people's wishes, otherwise they will leave me or attack me.
6. I have no control of myself.
7. I can't discipline myself.
8. I don't really know what I want.
9. I need to have complete control of my feelings otherwise things go completely wrong.
10. I am an evil person and I need to be punished for it.
11. If someone fails to keep a promise, that person can no longer be trusted.
12. I will never get what I want.
13. If I trust someone, I run a great risk of getting hurt or disappointed.
14. My feelings and opinions are unfounded.
15. If you comply with someone's request, you run the risk of losing yourself.
16. If you refuse someone's request, you run the risk of losing that person.
17. Other people are evil and abuse you.
18. I'm powerless and vulnerable and I can't protect myself.
19. If other people really get to know me they will find me rejectable.
20. Other people are not willing or helpful.
So... let's think of positive thoughts to replace these with!
Posted 6/12/2008 11:35 PM (#6547 - in reply to #6546) Subject: RE: Combating negative thought distortions
That is a very long list! I know that people with the psychiatric illnesses that you are speaking of often don't recognise the negative thought patterns they have. just recongnising them is a very good start. I am not going to confront every issue that you listed but I have to say that a next step might simply to when having one of these thoughts to 'look the other way' tell them (and yourself as I try to) that your not going to hurt that negative thought's feelings any if you just look to something positive, even for a moment. Distract yourself from your negativity. If you do this even for a moment you will have turned a part of yourself to a bettter way of thinking. the distraction of a new leaf is often enough to inspire a moment of happiness in a day that is not going you way. Just a moment's distraction is capable of turning the tide!
Posted 6/13/2008 11:45 AM (#6550 - in reply to #6546) Subject: RE: Combating negative thought distortions
Thanks for the post. Interesting to read, particularly by someone (me) who has self esteem issues..that every single one of these negative thoughts on your list, in my opinion, can be equated to low self worth and esteem....I am certain it is safe to say that we all experience these negative thoughts to some degree or another.
I will attempt to create positive thoughts with 2 of them here.
1: "I will always be alone"- It is ok to be alone..or I like to be alone, or what causes me to be alone?
5. "I have to adapt my needs to other people's wishes, otherwise they will leave me or attack me".- I cannot be my authentic self because I have been shamed and I have abandonment issues. I am worthy of being true to myself - if I surround myself with positive people and energy, everything else will follow suit.
Thank you again, I will refer to this often for my Self Work!
Posted 11/3/2008 9:22 AM (#11994 - in reply to #6550) Subject: RE: Combating negative thought distortions
Location: United Kingdom
Fascinating ... going through old posts how we work on similar and recurrent themes in slightly different ways .... I'll stop doing this now in case it comes to seem that i am living in the past and not welcoming the future - least of all, living in the present moment !
Posted 11/3/2008 12:14 PM (#12012 - in reply to #6546) Subject: RE: Combating negative thought distortions
Location: In the One
1. There is no I.
2. God is love.
3. Live from the personality level or live from the Spirit
4. All the resources of Spirit are available to me in the moment I need them.
5. Love, cooperation, sharing, wisdom. Sometimes "no" is the best gift.
7. The I that cannot discipline itself is not the real I.
8. The soul/heart knows.
9. Feelings are neither right nor wrong.
10. Consciousness is neither evil nor good.
11. Trust God/the Unknown
12. Love and support come from all sides all the time.
Posted 11/3/2008 3:57 PM (#12026 - in reply to #6546) Subject: RE: Combating negative thought distortions
Location: In the One
13. Yes. Trust 'God.'
14. Feelings and opinions are founded on many illusions. Pick the ones you want.
16. You cannot lose what you cannot own.
17. Eternal Self cannot be harmed.
19. Yes, as well as acceptable.
20. People are amazingly gracious.
Posted 11/3/2008 5:00 PM (#12032 - in reply to #12028) Subject: RE: Combating negative thought distortions
Those are truly some intensely complex emotions and self-reflections to struggle with. Geniunely. I know it wasn't a "to do list" but I did try to work through some of them. Some were too complex though.
1) There is somebody out there that loves me.
2) I have people in my life that love me.
3) I have qualities that make me unique and wonderful, and here are are some of them . . .
4) I have the strength handle my life and know how much is enough to take on.
5) I am not responsible for other peoples desires or wishes.
6) Those tendencies that are hard to control I will learn to own one day at a time until I master them.
8) Here is a small list I know that I want to accomplish in this lifetime . . .
9) I know if I let go of my feelings I will learn to see different sides of life.
10) I have beautiful and good qualities, and here are some of them . . .
11) When someone doesn't keep a promise I will try to understand why and what happened.
13) If I trust someone, I will have a chance to connect with them.
14) My feelings are important to me and make me the unique person I am, even if they don't make sense.
15) Helping someone is an act of generous giving and means that I am showing that I care.
16) Saying no establishes healthy boundaries where others need to take care of themselves.
17) There are people in the world
19) I have qualities that make me unique and wonderful, and here are are some of them . . .
20) There are generous people in this world if I only learn to ask.