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” 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 own inquiry into yourself – your own therapeutic effort – you start to become more conscious of (and let go of) the unnecessary thoughts and behavioral patterns that you once believed were essential to remain safe from perceived threat.

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 literally changes. Once this starts happening regularly, it becomes just as easy to function in a healthy way as it was challenging to remain in a dysfunctional way.

Unfortunately, the need for putting the time and dedicated effort into therapy and self-help sometimes gets ignored or avoided for long spans of time in a human life. Other life activities and pursuits are 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; he has to choose it for himself, and for reasons that make sense to him. 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!