Steps to Initiate Cognitive Restructuring: Implement these steps during times of stress or negative self-talk. Remember Cognitive Restructuring is an ongoing process that will get easier with practice.
- Awareness: identify the stressor, why the situation/event (and what emotional attitudes associated with event) is stressful, and acknowledging the stressors presence.
- Reappraisal of the situation: try to think about the situation objectively.
- Adoption and substitution: substitute a positive attitude towards the situation.
- Evaluation: Identify if the positive attitude you adopted in step 3 is useful. If not, return to step 2 and create a new reappraisal.
- Initiate a relaxation technique to calm your mind (meditation, deep breathing, Progressive Muscle Relaxation, etc.)
- Take responsibility for your own thoughts
- Adjust expectations
- Give yourself positive affirmations
- Accentuate the positive