Welcome to our blog! This is the First post in a three part series on dealing with difficult emotions by Jessica Foreman, PLMFT.
In my clinical practice I often incorporate DBT (Dialectical Behavioral Therapy) interventions and techniques. According to this therapeutic orientation there are three states of mind: Emotion Mind, Reasonable Mind, and Wise Mind. Everyone has these three states of mind, and it can be helpful to identify which one you are currently in so that you can help yourself.
Emotion mind is the place where we are overcome by our feelings or ruled by our moods. People say or do things in emotion mind that they would not do if they felt relaxed and safe. Illness, lack of sleep, and crisis situations can make us vulnerable to this state of mind.
Reasonable mind in its extreme form is the polar opposite of Emotion mind. This state of mind is overly pragmatic and completely insensitive to emotion.
Neither emotion or reasonable mind is a wrong state of mind. There are times when being in these states of mind is helpful and effective, such as when self sacrifice is necessary, or when putting Ikea furniture together. Moving toward a synthesis of the two, or Wise Mind is important when we are in one state or the other and behaving in ineffective ways that lack skill.
Tomorrow we’ll discuss moving from emotion mind into wise mind by practicing a skill called checking the facts.
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For more information about DBT: https://linehaninstitute.org/.