Creating a MAP - Part 3
Sessions 7-9: Cognitive, or Thinking Tools
These tools are designed to promote helpful thinking and increase confidence. Combined with the previous section, behavioural tools part 1, these tools will help prepare you to engage in the final section, which will see you confronting your anxiety by engaging in exposure work.
To learn how thinking can impact your anxiety, making it worse or making it better. You will learn a variety of “thinking” tools designed to identify and then challenge, unhelpful thoughts as a step towards reducing unwanted or excessive anxiety. As in prior sections, if you get the point right away, you do not need to persist in reading over the additional tools.
Topic: Understanding brain messages and identifying thinking traps
Instructions: Read through the Helpful Thinking section to learn about self-talk and specific thoughts that can lead to anxiety. For the next week or so, focus on Step 1 and 2. Spend a little time each down jotting down some of your anxious thoughts. In addition, read through the Thinking Traps worksheet to learn about common thinking traps that lead to anxiety. See if you can notice the traps you get caught in.
This session also includes lots of information related to specific anxiety disorders (generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), social anxiety disorder, panic disorder, etc.) – skim through the other material to see what might be relevant to you.
Session 8 & 9
Topic: Changing the way you think
Instructions: Take some time to read through the Helpful Thinking section and focus on Steps 3 and 4. Now that you’ve gotten better at noticing your self talk, and in particular your anxious thoughts, it’s time to start challenging them. Use the Helpful Thinking worksheet to help you identify and challenge anxious/unhelpful thinking and start developing more balanced thoughts. Also, read over the material on coping cards and create your own.
These sessions also include lots of information related to specific anxiety disorders (generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), social anxiety disorder, panic disorder, agoraphobia, etc.), as well as some information on overcoming perfectionism (focus on Step 2, Tool 1) – skim through the other material to see what might be relevant to you.
- Helpful Thinking (Steps 3 & 4)
- Helpful Thinking for Agoraphobia
- Helpful Thinking for Panic Disorder
- Helpful Thinking for Social Anxiety
- Managing Obsessions: Helpful Strategies
- Managing Obsessions: Unhelpful Interpretations
- Overcoming Perfectionism
- Rethinking the Usefulness of Worry
- Cognitive Coping Cards