007: M = Methods (Part 1) — You FEEL the Way You THINK

In this Podcast, Dr. Burns describes the three basic principles of what has been called “cognitive therapy:”

  1. Negative feelings, like depression, anxiety, and anger, do not result from what happens to us, but rather from our thoughts about what’s happening. In fact, our thoughts, or “cognitions,” create all of our emotions, positive and negative.
  2. When you’re depressed or anxious, the negative thoughts that trigger your distress, like “I’m no good,” or “Things will never change,” are distorted or illogical. In fact, depression is the world’s oldest con.
  3. When you change the way you THINK, you can change the way you feel.

Dr. Burns describes a challenge he received in a thoughtful letter from a fan shortly after his book, Feeling Good, was published. The young man argued that when something horrible happens, the event itself can upset you, and asked, “Let’s say you’re trapped on a railroad track a a train is coming. Isn’t it true that you’d feel terrified, and the event would cause your terror, even without having time to put a negative thought in your head?” 

Shortly after reading the letter, Dr. Burns stumbled across an elderly man about to be hit by a train. You may be surprised to find out what happened!

Dr. Burns also describes the powerful and painful impact of his own negative thoughts when he was a young psychiatric in training and he received a stinging criticism from his supervisor, Dr. Aaron Beck.

4 thoughts on “007: M = Methods (Part 1) — You FEEL the Way You THINK

  1. Thanks, Lisa! david

    David D. Burns, M.D.

    Adjunct Clinical Professor Emeritus

    Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

    Stanford University School of Medicine

    From: lisakelleytherapy@gmail.com [mailto:lisakelleytherapy@gmail.com] Sent: Sunday, August 07, 2016 10:04 PM To: Feeling Good ; david burns ; Fabrice Nye Subject: Re: [New post] Podcast #7: M = Methods — You FEEL the Way You THINK

    Wonderful! Enjoyed listening to it on my way back home from the mountains. Will post this week.


    Sent from my iPhone

  2. Hello, Dr. Burns. You’re an incredible inspiration. My question is whether you will ever release a book on habits addiction (which seem to be mentioned the least expensive on your blog and podcast), or whether you will have a podcast strictly on this subject? If not, any recommendations?

    Also, how effrctive is T.E.A.M. therapy for habits and addictions? Is it anywhere close to its power for depression and anxiety?

  3. Excellent Podcast..with one small exception: It seemed the interviewer was on a different page at times, and once even forgot what the game plan was, which made it hard for your to stay with the current line of thought. Other than that, It was A+ all the way. I can’t help but wonder how many lives you have changed besides mine; keep up the great work.

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