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Our adventure begins with: All or Nothing Thinking

All or nothing thinking, also known as black and white thinking, is a common cognitive distortion that involves seeing things in absolute terms, without any shades of grey. This type of thinking can be harmful because it leads to overly rigid and unrealistic thinking patterns that can prevent you from seeing the world as it truly is.


People who engage in all or nothing thinking tend to see things in terms of extremes. For example, they might see themselves as either a complete success or a complete failure, without any room for anything in between. They might also see other people as either completely good or completely bad, without considering the complexity and nuance of human behaviour.


All or nothing thinking can be particularly damaging when it comes to our own self-image. By seeing ourselves in extreme terms, we can become overly critical of ourselves and our abilities. This can lead to low self-esteem and a lack of confidence in our ability to achieve our goals.


All or nothing thinking can also lead to negative thought patterns that can sabotage our success. For example, if we believe that we must be perfect in order to succeed, we may become too afraid to try new things or take risks. This can prevent us from pursuing our goals and reaching our full potential.


One way to combat all or nothing thinking is to practice mindfulness and challenge our extreme thoughts. This involves recognizing when we are engaging in black and white thinking, and consciously reframing our thoughts to be more realistic and balanced. For example, instead of thinking "I am a complete failure," we can remind ourselves that we are not perfect, and that everyone makes mistakes, especially when trying new things and working towards challenging goals.


Another way to combat all or nothing thinking is to seek out support from others. This can include talking to friends and family members, having conversations with colleagues, or seeking clarity in coaching sessions. These people can provide us with a different perspective and help us see things in a more balanced way. Coaching is especially useful because it allows for the exploration of the complexity of your situation in a non-judgemental way.


Overall, all or nothing thinking is a common but harmful cognitive distortion that can prevent us from seeing the world as it truly is. By practicing mindfulness and seeking support from others, we can overcome this distortion and learn to think in a more balanced and realistic way, helping us to achieve our goals more easily.


M :)


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