Monday, March 14, 2011

COGNITIVE DISTORTIONS: The Ten Forms of Self Defeating Thoughts

I thought I would share a bit some information that I have found to be very helping in the process of increasing self-awareness, which is critical during recovery from an eating disorder. I'd love to know if any of you can identify with these, and how you have replaced them with healthy and more rational ways of thinking.....

1) All or nothing-thinking (Black/White thinking)
When you see every situation as all or nothing. If a situation falls short of perfect, you see it as a total failure.

2) Overgeneralization
You see a single example of rejection or error as a never ending pattern of defeat; using words such as "always" or "never" when you think about it.

3) Mental Filter
When you pick out a single negative detail and dwell on it exclusively, until your reality becomes darkened, like the drop of ink that discolors a beaker of water.

4) Discounting the positive
You may reject positive experiences by insisting that they 'don't count'. If you do a good job, you can't accept that it's good enough, and you discount it's value.

5) Jumping to conclusions
You interpret things negatively when there are no facts to support your conclusion.
a)Mind Reading; making conclusions without checking
out the facts.
b)Fortune Telling; predicting that things will turn
out badly.

6) Magnification (Mountains & Mole Hills)
When you exaggerate the importance of yoru problems and shortcomings, or you minimize the importance of your desirable qualities. May also be referred to as the
"Binocular trick".

7) Emotional reasoning
When you assume that your negative emotions are reflective of the way things really are. Such as "I feel guilty; I must be a terrible person."

8) "Should statements"
You tell yourself that things should be the way you hoped or expected them to be. "should" statements that are directed against yourself lead to guilt and frustration. If they are directed against other people or the world in general, this can lead to anger and frustration.

9) Labeling
This is an extreme form of all-or-nothing thinking. Instead of stating, "I made a mistake", you may say, "I'm a loser". Or you may label yourself as a "failure", a "jerk", etc. This may extend to others as well. You seem them as totally bad.

10) Personalization and blame
When you feel responsible for everything bad or wrong that happens in your world, or even in the world of those around you. However, you don't take credit for the good things that may happen.

Without apology...♥

Sunday, March 13, 2011

I Can Only Imagine

FEELING can be painful, no doubt about it.
I still choose it over the numbness and clouds of being enveloped by an eating disorder.
It's been a very emotional weekend for me. I keep reminding myself that I was never promised
that life would be fair, or that it's meant to be easy.
Of course I would like that. Everyone happy, no injustice. No one dying, and no pain.
Accepting that life is not fair, perfect or always joyful took me a long time, but after Tim was shot dead just three months after his 17th birthday, I realized that I had not choice, really.
Back to this weekend.
Sometimes the 325 mile trip is fairly benign, and other times, memories come flooding, which evolves into a flood of tears.
Just to clarify, I have NO desire to ever live in Bedford again. However, I lived the first [almost] 46 years of my life in that area, so there will always be part of Bedford in me.
I will always have the memories of my own childhood [not so great, but even so...], and the more emotional memories of raising my boys. Being a Mother was the greatest gift I was ever given.
After having Tim taken almost 10 years ago, and now, Matt so lost in his own life, and pulling farther and farther away, the 'Mother' part of me is trembling, withering and simply hurting.
If you are familiar with the song, "I Can Only Imagine" by MercyMe, you may understand why it touches a very tender place for me. That song was popular at the time of Tim's death. Every time I hear it I cry. No, I sob, and I envision him with my Father, his 'Papaw', dancing in Heaven.
The song came on the radio about 30 minutes North of Bedford as we drove in on Saturday.
I imagined Tim wearing Matt's football jersey "54" [which Matt had buried with Tim], dancing with my Dad.
I miss them both so much.
Death frightens me......or more so, the thought of losing someone I love frightens me.
We visited my Aunt in the Father's older sister. She is 86, almost 87.
Another reminder that none of us lives forever [on this Earth].
This is a complex and painful thought for me.
Our visit to the cemetery brought more tears and an anger....I was struck once again at the unfairness of Tim's death, and I cannot help but wonder, yet again, what would he be like as an adult man? No one will ever know.
My attempt to meet up with Matt was met with angry words and statements of my own lack, what he doesn't have, and somehow, why it's my fault.
Although I have NO doubts that these accusations are false, it's painful to hear, and even more painful to know that Matt does believe them.
I didn't see Matt this weekend. He hung up on me twice.
As we are driving North, I feel an emptiness, like I'm leaving my sons behind. Not by choice, but due to the fact that life is not fair, and I must continue to embrace the life I have been given...and LIVE.
I don't want to be numb again. I won't be.
My daily life as I live it now holds countless opportunities for me. The pace of my life keeps me energized and excited about what I do, and while I may not always feel this sadness, I carry it with me. I am human. I have lost people dear to me, as many have.
I crave a relationship with Matt. I can't force it.
I have the opportunity to be in my grandson's life, and to hopefully enrich his life in some small way.
I will latch onto this and once again look into a small boy's eyes with love.
Thank you for reading.
Without apology....♥

Friday, March 11, 2011

Chasing myself....

It's definitely time to write. I miss having time to share, vent, and release all of the words in my head; and there are many!

Yet, I wouldn't change a thing about my daily life, but I would love it if I could 'gift' myself a few additional hours of sleep each night!! Some days LIVING is certainly tiring!!

This has been a week of errors. No, I don't mean that the week has been a mistake, but that I have made far too many 'missteps' along the way, and even more upsetting has been my realization that I am still not forgiving enough of myself, for simply being human.

The good thing....I can now 'see' that I am beating myself up, almost before it begins, and I am able to interrupt it, or at least take