Today, the Cognitive Distortion Starter Kit Continues with
Rhonda begins by reading a beautiful emails from a listener who was greatly inspired and helped by the personal work Marilyn Coffee did on several previous podcast. I also give a brief shout out for my new book, Feeling Great, which can be pre-ordered on Amazon now (see below for the link).
Rhonda and David begin with a brief overview of Emotional Reasoning. this is a term i coined when I first created the list of ten cognitive distortions in the mid-to late 1970s. There is the definition:
Emotional Reasoning is when you reason from how you feel. Here are several examples:
- “I feel like a loser, so I must really be a loser.”
- “I feel hopeless, so I must be hopeless.”
- “I feel anxious, so I must be in danger.”
- “I feel like a bad therapist, so I must really be one.”
- “I feel judged. This means that people are judging me.”
- “I feel guilty. This means that I did something bad.”
Emotional Reasoning is a distortion because your feelings all result from your thoughts. And if your thoughts are distorted, then your emotions / feelings will not reflect reality. Sometimes, your feelings are no more realistic than the images you see in funhouse mirrors in an amusement park.
This is worth knowing because for decades mental health professionals have promoted the ideas that getting in touch with your feelings is the key to mental health. There’s truth in everything, and this is sometimes true. Being open with your feelings can be an important key to intimacy and to genuine relationships with others.
But your feelings can also deceive you. For example, the feeling of hopelessness is always based on distortions and is never true. But sometimes believe it so strongly that they attempt suicide as the only escape from their suffering.
David and Rhonda discuss examples of emotional reasoning and the techniques that can be helpful, including, but not limited to:
- The Double Standard Technique
- The Socratic Method
- Truth Based Techniques, such as:
- Examine the Evidence
- The Experimental Technique
- The Survey Technique
David describes a father who was convinced he was a bad father because he shouted at his sons, and Rhonda describes an aspiring writer she recently treated who felt like she was dull and unimportant prior to a meeting with prospective agents.
We are nearing the end of the distortion series, but still have two mega-important distortions to discuss:
- Should Statements
David mentions that Emotional Reasoning is not only important in emotional problems like depression and anxiety, but also in anger and conflict with others, as well as racial and religious bias. You feel like other racial or religious groups are inferior, and you feel superior, so you think you are right!
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Rhonda and David
You can reach Dr. Burns at firstname.lastname@example.org. Dr. Rhonda Barovsky practices in Walnut Creek, California, and can be reached at email@example.com. She is a Level 4 Certified TEAM-CBT therapist and trainer and specializes in the treatment of trauma, anxiety, depression, and relationship problems. She also does forensic work in family court, but finds TEAM-CBT to be way more rewarding!
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This is the cover of my new book, Feeling Great. It will be released in September of 2020, but you can pre-order it now on Amazon! If you pre-order it, this will help greatly in the ratings the day actually released.
Another idea based on the first law of thermodynamics. Matter can neither be created or destroyed, therefore your atoms that make up you cant either therefore if matter is value therefore you always have value. Too much logical positivism though.
thanks, Tom. I understand that the Jewish concept of a holy man or woman is someone who treats others and the environment, all living things, with respect. That is kind of like your basic insight that all matter has value. I believe that matter can be converted into energy, and vice versa, according to Einstein. And in the earliest moments of the universe, during the sudden and massive and continuing expansion, energy was created, and then matter was subsequently created. That is likely part science and part speculation! Fun to think about, though! david
Hi David, I just heard you say you did not wanna go on your Sunday hike cause you don’t want to pick up Covid from another hiker and die. I’m sure if you put on a high quality mask and stay 6 to 10 feet away from other’s when hiking it would be fine. I’m scared as well, but I have gone up hiking and it has made me feel better. I’m sure it would make you feel good as well. Hiking makes you forget all about the virus.
Thank you for all your wonderful work,
Thanks! Just hiked with family today, but noticed kids DO NOT respect the required distancing, so it felt risky. d
I greatly enjoyed your podcast, as always. You’ve saved my life on numerous occasions.
I just wanted to follow up on your story of the Saint you mentioned at the beginning of the podcast. I believe that you were referring to the Apostle Paul. At 2 Corinthians 12:7-10 he said the following:
“To keep me from becoming overly exalted, I was given a thorn in the flesh, an angel of Satan, to keep slapping me, so that I might not be overly exalted. 8 Three times I begged the Lord about this, that it would depart from me. 9 But he said to me: “My undeserved kindness is sufficient for you, for my power is being made perfect in weakness.” Most gladly, then, I will boast about my weaknesses, in order that the power of the Christ may remain over me like a tent. 10 So I take pleasure in weaknesses, in insults, in times of need, in persecutions and difficulties, for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am powerful”
Many scholars feel that the “thorn in the flesh” that the Apostle Paul referred to was failing eyesight. The point he was making was that although he was a capable man,he had limitations that prevented him from doing everything that he wanted to do.He realized that there was only so much he could do without any help from a higher source. God’s holy spirit could supply the power that he lacked. Not only that, but God’s spirit could empower him to perform tasks that he would never have been able to complete in his own power. The same is true of us today. If the strength we have comes from God, we will be strong indeed! I know on my own, I could never have coped with the various trials and tribulations that I’ve faced in life..
Thanks again, and please keep these great podcasts coming! They’re so very helpful and inspiring.
Thanks, Roger, for the details on the Biblical passage, as well as the kind thoughts! Might read a snippet on a podcast, using just your first name, if that’s okay. Warmly, david
You’re welcome. Sure thing, that would be fine with me. Thanks again for all you do.
You’re welcome, and thanks to you, Roger! d
Science and spirituality has always been an interest of mine so I appreciate you addressing the interaction between them in this episode.
Thanks so much, Ed! david