The first goal is to learn to identify negative, irrational, and unproductive thoughts, because believe it or not, many individuals are unaware that what they are saying, thinking, and doing are negative and unproductive ways to engage the world, even creating disease.
The second goal is to learn the tools to cope with and deconstruct these thoughts, because it is not enough to only gain awareness of your negative thinking patterns – that does not equal change.
The third goal is to replace the identified and deconstructed thoughts with positive, rational, and productive thoughts, which can be a real challenge in the beginning.
The fourth goal is to PRACTICE. DAY AND NIGHT. 1,000 TIMES A DAY. Until it becomes second nature and the new, productive, HEALTHY way that you engage the world. What we truly desire in life, we will create. Practice!
I am living proof that with this way of viewing and engaging the world, you can THRIVE with a debilitating disease, like RSD/CRPS. It took me a good year of practice before it became habit and second nature, but it is totally worth the time and effort.
Distorted Thought: “I am so angry that this happened to me. My life is over.”
Realistic Thought: “I am not my pain. I have so many great talents, and I am going to work toward a goal I can achieve.”
Stressor: Physical Limitations.
Distorted Thought: “I hate that I can’t run anymore. I can’t do anything.”
Realistic Thought: “Just because I can’t run doesn’t mean that I have zero options. There are plenty of things I can still do, and I should be thankful for and focus on those.”
The way that you choose to view the world has a great impact on your health. You have two options -- you can choose to view it negatively or positively, and positively is the way to go. Negative emotions have a biological impact. Any questions?