Potentially, stress is something that threatens us all. The different events and conflicts in life can cause stress to individuals and generate mental health problems.
The memory and images of these situations mark the life of the person and evoke pain and suffering.
However, when something evokes these images, there can be a situation of tension that predisposes to stress and anxiety. These images are internal triggers that cause stress, even in the absence of real factors.
It is important to be aware of the pitfalls in which we can fall and which cause us stress.
For this, we will study the most common cognitive distortions that can generate stress. It is important to become aware of this in order to renew the models of thought that lead us to these.
- 1 Cognitive distortions that cause stress and anxiety
- 2 1. Thinking about something does not mean it's real
- 3 2. Value Judgment on Subjective Assumptions
- 4 3. Not all thoughts are equally important
- 5 4. Threatening Thoughts
- 6 5. Getting stuck in a stressful thinking style
- 7 6. Generalization of stress states
- 8 Control thoughts to manage stress
Cognitive distortions that cause stress and anxiety
1. Thinking about something does not mean it's real
We tend to think that some of our thoughts are real because they have a lot of strength, whether they have been accepted by others or that we have repeated them many times.
However, in reality, thoughts are only thoughts and do not necessarily represent an object reality.
In this way, the perception may be responsible for feelings such as anxiety and insecurity that the person experiences. Thus, it is vital to make sure of reality before drawing conclusions and making hasty assumptions.
2. Value Judgment on Subjective Assumptions
When people begin to believe that all their thoughts are real because they visualize them in their imagination, it means that they have distorted thoughts.
This irrational form of thought appears because human beings tend to make value judgments about people, the situation and events.
3. Not all thoughts are equally important
When we begin to believe that all thoughts are equally important, we make a mistake.
Some thoughts represent only our opinion or are the result of our personal evaluation. As a result, some may be important and others totally insignificant.
However, generally, we do not distinguish between important thoughts and insignificant thoughts, because we draw conclusions that lead us to a state of stress.
4. Threatening Thoughts
Sometimes we imagine a threat to each situation and we begin to believe every thought that comes to mind.
All these thoughts are not real. Some of them represent a threat that is not necessary: they are dysfunctional thoughts.
However, the person receiving them tends to believe in it and feels threatened and stressed. We must pay attention to this tendency and not give in to every thought that comes to mind.
5. Getting stuck in a stressful thinking style
Sometimes we find ourselves stuck in a style of thinking that includes permanence, ubiquity and personalization.
These traps can cause immense stress on the person who believes that the stress will be there forever (permanence). In reality, very few stressors last forever.
6. Generalization of stress states
When a person tends to believe that the effects of stress have become widespread and will affect all aspects of their lives, they are making a big mistake and need to change their thinking.
Pessimistic people tend to commit this over-generalization error and to believe that the stress that touches one of the facets of their lives, will affect all the rest.
Control thoughts to manage stress
It is possible to manage stress effectively, by controlling our thoughts and not giving in to every thought that comes to mind in relation to a stressful situation.
Keep this in mind to avoid distorting your conclusions and reformulating your thoughts with new, healthier and more functional patterns.