Thursday, August 9, 2018

Overthinking & Depression, 4

One of the problems with rumination is that the overthinking tends to be about something that happened in the past, something you wish had not happened at all or that you wish had happened differently. You may know cognitively that “it’s over and done with” and you may even have learned how to do something in a different way because of the situation, but that doesn’t always stop the negative thinking. How do you know if you’re reaching the tipping point toward depression? Well, for starters, keep track of your positive versus your negative thoughts. Think of it as doing your own personal research project. Take a sheet of paper, draw a vertical line down the center of the page, and then label one column Positive and one column Negative. Put it on a clipboard or your mobile phone. Every time you recognize a negative thought, put a checkmark in the negative column. Every time you recognize a positive thought—and for this part of the research you are just counting what is happening—put a checkmark in the positive column. Do this every day for 3-4 days, then sit down and count the checkmarks in each column. You will likely begin to see a pattern emerge. More tomorrow.

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