Instead of thinking in black and white…think In color

“There is no way I could ever finish this.”

“I am absolutely done with this.”

These two absolute statements are examples of something called cognitive distortion. And they can be very harmful to our brains. How you may ask, and you may ask anytime you may want to ask, because asking is good. Just don’t ask bout asking…

Well first, by prolonging stress and magnifying our feelings. Now feelings are fine as far as they go, but reason and reasonable thought should always be guiding and holding our feelings hand in hand as we go along our sometimes not so merry way.

Then by making it really hard to solve problems. Thinking too fully about the problem instead of thinking of the solution, or solutions available to us, isn’t the way to navigate our way through this, what at times, can be a very stressful life. Having a map is fine and good but getting to our destination sometimes calls upon us to use some resourceful thinking.

And by creating a self perpetuating, habit forming mindset. Why does it feel (those feelings again getting in our way) as though bad habits are so easy to come by? And then also why do those bad habits become so hard to break? Don’t forget, asking is good.

So. Suggestions?

When I hear sentences that are so absolute, so up or down, so yes or no, know what? They sound so black and white to me. And then you always hear that there are shades of gray in a world of black and white, that everything really isn’t black and white. There’s some gray areas around the edges. That’s fine. But how bout instead of dull gray areas on the perimeters of life, why not have some areas of full radiantly gorgeous color. And then we can go even further. Instead of thinking in black and white…let’s think in color.

Why not try a new attitude? Just asking…

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Now headmaster declares, “Lets take a quick look at our first statement.”

“There is no way I could ever finish this.”

Pretty black and white. And a little negative. So let’s add a little out-of-the-coloring-box color to this problem. Let’s think about what you’d have to do to finish this project and again, because asking is a good thing, let’s ask:

Do we need more time? If we were able to get up earlier to work on this, could we get it done? Or maybe watch less TV tonite so we could work on it? Time is a pretty valuable commodity that isn’t of an endless supply, so maybe we should look into how we are spending it. Again. Just asking…

How about more money? Would we be able to sacrifice, say our daily coffee cash, to get this project done? Or maybe save on a few lunches and brown bag it so this thing could get finished? How much do we really want the project to be finished. What’s our price?

Or how bout going extreme here. What if finishing this project would actually save our life. I know, I know. Pretty extreme, but when you think in color, you never know where it will take you. Pretty sure that if your life depended on it, this project would be done and done very quickly. So maybe playing a little drama queen/king is all that you need. Get ‘er done.

Know what? Theres another really nice benefit to thinking in color. What is that you may ask, since asking is good? Well, all the above suggestions are about you having choice. And about you having control. Control and choice kinda make you the master of your own domain, don’t they? And having some choice and control over a problem, well, you shouldn’t have too many problems left, don’t you think?

I’ll ask…right?

So right.

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