n. Repetitive Negative Thinking

When in doubt, write it out.

 I suggest writing as homework frequently. There are different types of writing exercises that are likely to be helpful for different types of suffering. Here’s a working list. We can add to it when we talk more about it.  Writing for OCD and anxious doubt Self-monitoring for daily anxiety and OCD. This writing has a really …

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I get to do that.

Over-responsibility of thoughts about the futureA few weeks ago, we focused on over-responsibility in both the present and the past. Several people asked about over-responsibility in the future. Thanks for the reminder. I forgot to worry about the future. The short answer is that it’s the same answer minus content plus anticipatory anxiety and emotional perfectionism. Got that?  Thought-action …

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I’ll do that slowly.

Anything worth doing is worth doing slowly.Think of the most miraculous of your accomplishments.Getting yourself created. Nailed it. It took 9 months. Walking. Nice job. Another 9 months at least. Talking. You babbled your way through it. Most people didn’t understand you for years. Reading, writing, and learning to code also took years. These are just external milestones. You were …

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Rumination

Rumination as a repetitive negative thinking state is triggered by pervasive negative beliefs. It is a sticky thinking pattern that shows up habitually when triggered by certain environmental or internal states. Type 4 – Rumination Ego-orientation: Ego-syntonic, meaning that ruminative thoughts seem believable to the thinker. Time orientation: Past Content: Churning through memories to figure out …

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Mental compulsions

The nature of obsessive thoughts is that they are unwanted and intrusive. They arrive with a spike of anxiety or uncertainty and the urge to do something that makes them stop. Behavior that you feel compelled to perform, against your conscious wishes, with the sole intention of ending a thought, feeling or sensation is a …

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Worry as a process

Your process for any task is your series of steps to achieve your end. Your process for brushing your teeth or cleaning your kitchen may seem to you like “that’s just how you do it,” but if you surveyed the next 10 people you encounter it is very likely that their process for those tasks are …

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Functional Worry

I’ve decided to organize the categories of repetitive negative thinking into types so that I can also organize interventions that will be most helpful for each type. You won’t find this in any textbook, scholarly articles, or elsewhere on the internet. I’m using these types for us to have shared language without unhelpful interpretations that come …

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Repetitive Negative Thinking (RNT)

At the end of last year, we discussed experiential avoidance including escape strategies and reassurance seeking, situational avoidance, somatic avoidance, cognitive avoidance, emotional avoidance and emotion-driven behaviors. For the next several weeks, we will shift to another type of response mechanism that creates, maintains, and intensifies psychological suffering: repetitive negative thinking. Repetitive negative thinking is the …

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