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Guest ASchwartz

Hi forgeting,

You can try to answer the question you have posed about why you continue to have SI and Ed urges even though you have gotten past these issues by trying to remember the types of situations that might provoke these types of reactions.

In Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, we refer to the types of thoughts you are asking about as "automatic thoughts." They are automatic because they have become habitual when certain types of situations come up. Because automatic thoughts are not helpful to any of us what we need to learn to do is assess the situation that provoked the thought and do a realistic assessment of our reaction, then replace the automatic thought with a realistic thought.

The example I used to give in therapy went somthing like this:

"On the way to work, I missed the bus and I feel very frustrated. I tell myself, this is an awful day (it's only 7AM). I start to feel depressed and tell myself that I always screw up and life is not worth living. By the time I get to work, I feel awful."

The situation is that I missed the bus. The automatic thoughts are: 1. the day is awful, 2. I always screw up, 3. Life is not worth living.

If I do a realistic assessment I say to myself: 1. Yes, it can be frustrating to miss the bus, but, so what, so I'll be a little late to work, not big deal. 2. I do not ALWAYS scew up and this was not a screw up, I missed the bus, that is all. I'll get up earlier tomorrow. 3. Life is good, it is just that frustrating things can happen but I can cope with them.

Gee, now I feel better.

See what I mean?

Allan

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