Friday, 3 June 2011

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy -Session 3

I was excited about attending session 3 of my cognitive behavioural therapy.  I had had a good week, done a few new things and tried not to let my body manage my life but I manage my body.  The session started with the therapist talking about how I had scored on the anxiety and phobia levels again which were all still high.  This did not deter me though as I feel I can see the corner I need to turn in the distance.

This session was different.  Last week we had looked at the behaviour cycle, detailing what happened and when.    This week we were to go deeper into one area.  The area was to be my thoughts. She gave me a list of thinking errors that everyone has, the list was long so not one that I can detail here but if you want more information, email me and I will happily forward it to you. We took a situation where I had had a panic or anxiety attack previously, then I sat and thought about how I had felt. This was the hard part.  The therapist took every thought that I had and turned it around, making me see it as a 'thinking error' and not an actual practical thought.  For example, a fear of being sick of fainting in a public place I saw as people seeing me as stupid but that could come under a few thinking errors including 'Mind Reading'.  I should not expect to know others reactions to things but should allow myself to live.

The session was hard as we went into quite a few situations, ones for personal reasons, I do not think are right to share here on the world wide web.  This session was all about tackling those thought processes and realising that I was thinking the wrong way.  Changing that thought process is not going to be an easy one but one that will take time and energy.  I was given a 'Thought Record' to fill in when I feel anxious.  It allows me to write down the situation and pick it apart as it happens.  You detail the situation then the moods you are feeling and label them with a percentage.  From there you can write down the automatic thoughts that enter your head enabling you to link them to 'thinking errors'.  From there I can find alternative or rational thoughts to attach to the feelings.  This in time should make my mind start to rethink the way it thinks.

This is not going to be an easy or quick process.  I need to continue with my 'homework' until it all comes naturally.  Like learning to drive - when you started you had to think about every little process but years after, you can get in the car and drive off.

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