by Jessica Smith, LCPC
And finally, our last five distortions to cover!
This distortion involves internalizing our emotions so that we believe what we feel must be true. For example, “I’m feeling sad today. I’m such a miserable person” or “I’m feeling overwhelmed, so I’m not going to be able to solve this problem.”
With this distortion, we feel the need to try to change others to suit our needs because we depend on others for happiness. This can occur especially in romantic relationships when we try to “save” our partner from their troubles and attempt to change them to fit a certain mold.
This distortion entails extreme overgeneralizing and mislabeling with overly negative attributes or explanations for others’ behaviors. This distortion typically involves a lack of empathy as well. An example could be concluding a peer is a terrible mother when she doesn’t pack her child a healthy lunch for daycare.
As the name of this distortion implies, we feel the need to always be right and defend our opinions and actions at all costs, including our relationships with people we care most about. Always needing to be right limits our own personal growth as it leads us to be unable to learn from other perspectives or practice empathy for others.
This distortion is the belief that our good deeds will somehow always be rewarded by others or some higher power, and we feel bitter when they are not. For example, “I’m going to have such a good day because I bought a stranger’s coffee in the drive through line this morning.”
Phew, we made it. If you’re feeling a little overwhelmed by all of these distortions because you can see how you’ve engaged in a lot of them, remember it’s OK as it is completely normal. Also, as we’ve already discussed, the good news is we can work on it- read on to learn more about how!
Up Next: What CBT Says We Can Do About It!