How to De-Stress Your Life. Part 2

Remember your ABCs

What causes you to become irritated, overreactive, stressed or burned out? Ellis developed the Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy model, which includes looking at a set of ABCs. A’s represent activating events, which can include specific people or situations. B’s are beliefs about the activating events. Beliefs refer to the way you think in response to specific people or situations. C’s are your feelings and behaviors. It is important to realize that A’s (specific people and situations) do not cause C’s (feelings and behaviors). According to Ellis, B’s (your beliefs) cause C’s (feelings and behaviors).

This can be best remembered in an equation. A does not equal C, rather B equals C. Simply stated, you cannot always control the A’s (specific people and situations), but you can control the B’s (beliefs and thought process). The C’s are emotions from traditional beliefs or from new emotions created from a better thought process. The C’s can be considered the consequences of your behavior.

Beware of negative thoughts

How can you prevent yourself from becoming irritated, overreactive, stressed out, burned out, etc.? The key is in the B’s (beliefs and thoughts). Ellis has divided these negative thoughts into three main types: catastrophic thinking, absolute thinking and rationalization thinking.

Catastrophic thinking and believing usually involves a “what if” or an awful outcome. For example, “What if the new owner of the club does not like me?” The “what if” is an overreactive thought process that automatically tells your belief structure that the worst will happen.

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