This fits so well with the concept of primary and secondary emotions in DBT.  Try to identify the triggering emotion not your secondary reaction to it (eg being angry with yourself for feeling sad) and deal with the primary emotion which is the root cause.  Thoughts are similar but because they’re automatic, you can’t necessarily believe them and they’re often judgements on emotions or situations.  Always, always try to be mindful of emotions and thoughts, and how they interact.  Focus on your judgements and reaction; they’re what you can influence and change.

Published by Alex Anderson