“One more set. Just one more, to complete it to one dozen distortions, and then I will leave you alone,” Vladimir said to me, after I had told him, “We are done talking about cognitive distortions, let’s switch gears a bit.” Vladimir would not take no for an answer. Here is the last set of cognitive distortions or errors that I described to Vladimir. And you can use them, especially, to help your patients and clients.
“You said there were more than a dozen cognitive distortions. You told me about six, and I want to hear about more of them,” said Vladimir. I was happy to oblige, since he already began second-guessing his initial beliefs that CBT was more like a “quick fix” and reductionist view of the brain.
“Talking about these cognitive distortions has been helpful. What are some of the other ones?" Vladimir, a colleague who previously did not think much about CBT, has now become a believer.
After providing the background on CBT and an overview of cognitive restructuring and automatic thoughts, I then started to talk with him about cognitive distortions. Here we discuss 3 more...
Do your patients and clients tend to overgeneralize when they talk about themselves, their relationships, and the world at large? Make a note, put on your clinical and coaching hat, use the Socratic method, and your Motivational Interviewing spirit, and work with them.
“Hearing the history of CBT was very helpful; it put things in perspective. I heard you say how changing our patients’ thoughts will then help them change their feelings and then their behavior. How does that really work?”
As you now can see, CBT emanates from psychoanalytical principles, and instead of a “quick fix,” it touches on the core beliefs of our patients andclients, and the resulting changes have been shown to be long lasting.