Visualizing Connections between Thoughts, Emotions, and Behaviors – Step 6 (slide set 3)

**The ideas contained in this post are the opinions of the writer and communicated without reference to supporting documentation. Any uses of “she” or “he” in the communication of ideas are not intended to covey sexual bias. Breakaway MHE Disclaimer

Author: Peter Miller

As you make the consistent effort to break down life moments into “EVENT”, “INTERPRETATION”, “EMOTION”, and “SELF-TALK” as explained in Step-6 (slide-set 1) and Step 6 (slide-set 2), the ways that you experience your thoughts, emotions, and behaviors all begins to change. You become “the observer and responder” instead of “the reactor,” meaning there is more space between what happens and how you choose to respond to what happens.

As your internal and external life experience changes in these different ways, your beliefs about yourself, others, and the world slowly start to shift as well. In other words, through your inquiry into yourself – your therapeutic effort – you begin to become more and more conscious of (and let go of) the random thoughts and behavioural patterns that you once believed were essential to remain safe from perceived threat. You start to dismantle your self-destructive beliefs until eventually, they have no more power over you.

If you think of yourself as a biological machine that was once programmed, then it also makes sense that you can re-program yourself. Making these adjustments to your internal programming means that the information of life starts going through a different process than it did in the past. The way you process life information changes, and once this starts happening regularly, it becomes just as easy to function healthily as it was automatic to remain stuck in such a dysfunctional way.

Unfortunately, the need for putting the time and dedicated effort into mental health learning (and therapy) sometimes gets ignored or avoided for long spans of time in human life. Other life activities and pursuits are often viewed as being “more important” than this kind of work. The decision to help oneself to the extent necessary for real change is a decision that no one can make for another human. We have to make it for ourselves, and for reasons that make sense to us. That being noted, if others can find the courage and motivation to seriously face the mental health challenge and experience the benefits of change, then you can find it too!

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