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Cognitive Distortions PDF

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Cognitive Distortions
PDF Name Cognitive Distortions PDF
No. of Pages 2
PDF Size 1.09 MB
Language English
CategoryEnglish
Source uth.edu
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Cognitive Distortions

Dear readers, here we are presenting the Cognitive Distortions PDF to all of you. Cognitive distortions or ‘unhelpful thinking styles’ are ways that our thoughts can become biased. As conscious beings we are always interpreting the world around us, trying to make sense of what is happening.

For some of us, distorted thinking is a momentary blip. We get upset when we fail a math test. We briefly reason that we’re bad at math, instead of realizing we need to study more. But we typically move on and try again. So here you will find Cognitive Distortions with some examples.

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The 10 Most Common Cognitive Distortions

  1. Engaging in catastrophic thinking –

You are to expect the worst outcome in any situation. You often find yourself thinking, “What if…?” If your child misses curfew, you imagine he’s been in a car accident. If your boss schedules a meeting, you worry you’ll be fired. And your thinking spirals from there: You may think of losing your child. Getting fired means you’ll become homeless.

  1. Discounting the positive –

When something goes right — say you get a promotion — you acknowledge it but refuse to take credit. Instead, you chalk it up to dumb luck or a mistake. Or, you receive many positive comments on an evaluation, but choose to focus on a single piece of negative feedback.

  1. Emotional reasoning –

You rely on “gut” feelings over objective evidence to judge yourself and the world. For example, “I feel like a bad mother, therefore I must be a bad mother.”

  1. Labeling/mislabeling –

You often define yourself and others with negative labels. In assigning labels, you focus on one past behaviour or event. Your co-worker is “lazy” because they came to work late. You’re “stupid” because you failed the math test.

  1. Mental filtering – 

You view yourself, your life, and your future through a negative lens. You ignore anything positive. Filtering can increase feelings of hopelessness and helplessness.

  1. Jumping to conclusions – 

You base your decisions not on what someone says or does, but on what you believe they’re thinking. You believe you can read minds or anticipate reactions. You don’t ask what the other person thinks or feels.

Fortune-telling is another form of cognitive distortion related to jumping to conclusions. You insist you can predict the future, regardless of what you do. You’ll be famous without putting in the hard work. Or you’ll always be a failure, so hard work is a waste of time.

  1. Overgeneralization –

People who overgeneralize apply their experience from one event to another. If your marriage ended in divorce, you think you’re not worthy of love. As a result, you might conclude you should never date again.

  1. Personalization –

If people often tell you, “stop taking this so personally,” then you likely experience personalization. You blame yourself for things outside of your control. You falsely believe that everything that someone says or does is a direct reaction to you. Personalization can convince you that you are being targeted or excluded. It can also cause you to compare yourself to others.

  1. Polarized or black-and-white thinking –

This kind of thinking deals with extremes. People and situations are either great or terrible. You believe you’re either destined for success or failure. You don’t allow room for balanced perspectives or outcomes.

  1. “Should” statements

You have a list of rules for how people should and shouldn’t behave. Constantly blaming yourself or others for what “should” have been said or done (but wasn’t) can increase stress and anxiety. You will never be happy if you always focus on what “should” have been.

You can download the Cognitive Distortions PDF by clicking on the following download button.


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