Mental Health Articles: Negative Thinking
Thinking: Constructive Self Questions
- How does this thought make me feel? Does it help keep me depressed or angry? Nervous, anxious, or fearful? Frustrated or upset? Grieving? Guilty?
- Am I being negative?
- Am I dwelling on something negative? A flaw? A mistake?
- Something I want but don't have?
- Am I minimizing qualities in myself?
- Am I overlooking good in other people or the situation?
- Am I frustrating myself by wishing something I can't change wasn't true or by feeling something I can't change shouldn't be?
- Am I overreacting or blowing things out of proportion?
- Am I blowing one detail out of proportion?
- Am I overgeneralizing by using words like always, no, anything, nobody, everyone, never, and can't?
- Is it really true? Why? How do I know? What is the proof?
- Have I asked what they really said or thought or did?
- Could this situation have had nothing to do with me?
- Can I look at this another way? How else could I interpret it? And how else?
- What would I think if I felt better or wasn't so worried?
- What would I say to a friend in this situation if I was trying to help?
- What would a counselor, minister, or wise person trying to help say?
- How likely is my fear?
- Am I focusing on facts that are not relevant to this immediate situation?
- Is the event really less important than I first thought?
- Did a similar situation ever work out satisfactorily, better than I now feel this situation will?
- Haven't I experienced something similar before, survived, and gotten over it?
- Am I underestimating my ability to cope, to deal with it?
- Haven't I felt this way before? What did I do then? What could I do better now?
- Can I do something about this?
- Do I need to learn to accept this?
This article has been excerpted from the book Psychology Made Easy, by Chuck Falcon. This comprehensive and accessible resource covers over 100 personal problems, crises, and life skills and decisions, including judging love and relationships, detecting lies, 33 areas of raising children, addictions, obesity, stress, attention deficit disorder, and eating disorders. This book gives explanations, insight, and offers advice. Visit Cyberia's Bookshelf to read more about it.