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In a state of high emotion the brain kind of stops working properly.

Thinking becomes "black and white" or "all or nothing"

Start to notice that when you are emotional (angry, anxious) your thinking changes. This type of thinking can be very unhelpful.

When we feel down we think things like:

  • I'm no good

  • It's hopeless

When we are anxious we think:

  • It's going to be a disaster

  • I won't be able to cope

When we are angry we think

  • This is so unfair

  • No one respects me

When we look back after we feel less emotional we can see that these thoughts are often unhelpful.

If we can pause and take a deep breath and see these thoughts for what they are we can often reframe them in our head. See them from a different perspective.

For instance when we're feeling down we might say to ourselves:

  • "It's OK to feel sad, I will feel better soon" or

  • "I can do things to change this feeling"

When we're anxious we might think

  • "This isn't a real threat - it's just my body responding like it is" or

  • "I will get through this just like I've got through it before" or

  • "If i stay with the fear it will come and go"

Or when we're feeling angry we might think

  • "Oh that's interesting - why did that get to me so much" or

  • "responding angrily won't be helpful here - I should wait until I've calmed down"

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