Hatred corrodes the vessel in which it's stored.
We all get caught in negative thinking that brings us down. Would you like a simple way to reduce the amount of self defeating thinking that creates the urge to beat up on yourself? The ABC method is a component of Cognitive Therapy that highlights how our thoughts, beliefs, and perspectives (our cognitions) impact our feelings. Here is how it works-
-Activating event (the incident that I wish hadn’t happened)
Example-I took a wrong turn traveling to a meeting and was late.
-Belief about the event (what I tell myself about it)
Example-I'm an idiot who NEVER gets it right! Only losers make stupid mistakes.
-Consequence of that belief (feeling that results from my belief)
Example-I feel ashamed, stupid, depressed, sad, etc.
-It is the thought or belief about the event that causes my upset, not the event itself.
-Circumstances don’t cause my upset, what I tell myself or believe about them is what upsets me.
-I can alter my thoughts; therefore, I can change my feelings.
Turning it around- Based on the same thought thread above, see how changing your self talk can shift your feelings.
-Activating event- I made a mistake.
-Belief about the event-I’d prefer not to make mistakes, but everyone does so I'll cut myself some slack.
-Consequence-I feel disappointed but my self-esteem is intact.
If you'd like to practice, you can use the questions below as a guide to keep you on track-
Viktor Frankl, author of Man's Search for Meaning, said that in between each urge (stimulus) and its response is a space. It is that space wherein your power and freedom lie.
If for example, you find yourself reacting angrily and snapping harshly at your child when she grabs for candy at the supermarket checkout and you've tried to respond differently, pay attention to the small space between her action and your response. It is within THAT moment, that the choice to do it differently presents itself. Each time you even notice that space you've contributed to the eventual change in the pattern that makes you feel regretful.