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Improve Your Thinking

Goal

To learn how to think well.

How to Improve Your Thinking (Fulton State Hospital, p. 8)

Just like there are two sides to every coin, there is always more than one way to see a situation. Seeking to understand different perspectives can result in improving your thinking, which in turn can improve your mood and relationships. Avoiding extreme words (e.g., always, never, you make me, etc.) can help you to more clearly see all sides of a situation and from all points of view.

When it comes to understanding others and being understood, don’t assume that you know what others are thinking and don’t expect others to know what you are thinking. Instead ask, “What did you mean when you said...?” and say “What I’m trying to say is...”Learn more by watching the following video:

Good Thinking Exercise (Fulton State Hospital, p. 9)

Instructions: Based on what you now know about thinking well, identify the best examples of “good thinking” from the following groups of sentences:

  1. It’s hopeless. Why even try? I give up.
  2. My problems are gone, this is easy.
  3. This is hard for me, and I’m going to keep working at it.
  1. People should listen to me whenever I need to talk.
  2. I should be able to handle my own problems without bothering others.
  3. Sometimes I need someone to listen to me. When they can’t, it’s frustrating.
  1. I hate you for doing what you did. I am done being your friend.
  2. It shouldn’t be any big deal if other people hurt me.
  3. You really hurt my feelings, and we will have to work it out.
  1. My problems are my parent’s fault, so I shouldn’t have to work to solve them.
  2. All of my problems are my own fault.
  3. I may not have caused all of my own problems, but I need to solve them anyway.
  1. Other people always hurt me, so I don’t trust anyone.
  2. If I were healthy I would be able to trust everyone.
  3. I trust some people and find it very difficult to trust others.

Tip: The correct answer is “c” for each of the items.

Avoiding ________ words (e.g., always, never, you make me, etc.) can help you to more clearly see all sides of a situation and from all points of view.

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