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Feb 26, 2019 09:06:13

4 criteria for rational thought

by @brandonwilson PATRON | 233 words | 223🔥 | 223💌

Brandon Wilson

Current day streak: 223🔥
Total posts: 223💌
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Thoughts are real and what you focus on expands. With this in mind, it makes sense to figure out a way to analyze your thoughts and slowly change the way you think to improve all aspects of your life.

Some of the trickiest thoughts to deal with are irrational thoughts. These are thoughts that are not grounded in reality. They are dangerous because if you don't recognize that these thoughts are irrational, you might start believing them. 

It's usually easy to spot irrational thoughts when someone else has them. You can bring an external, objective point of view to other people's thoughts. When the thoughts are yours, however, all bets are off.

Dr. Phil provides a simple framework to analyze your own thoughts to determine whether they are rational.  In order for a thought to be rational, it has to meet these four criteria:

  1. Is it true? Is it based on verifiable fact?
  2. Is it in your best interest?
  3. Does it protect and prolong your life?
  4. Does it get you closer to what you really want?

If a thought doesn't pass all four criteria, it is not a rational thought.

Think about the thoughts you have on a daily basis. Are they rational thoughts based on these criteria? If not, consider why you are thinking these thoughts and re-frame your thoughts to be rational. This is not easy, but it's a worthwhile exercise.

  • 1

    @brandonwilson I'm not a fan of Dr. Phil, but I agree with this post. I'm starting to learn how to sit back and take an objective view of my thoughts; irrational or otherwise. And yes, it does help put things in proper perspective. This being said, a few irrational thoughts are ok too as long as their recognized for what they are.

    Jeff Riddall avatar Jeff Riddall | Feb 26, 2019 23:17:54
    • 1

      @Rawhead You are right recognition is the key. I wouldn't consider myself an ardent fan of Dr. Phil, but I find his podcast makes him a bit more accessible to me than his tv show.

      Brandon Wilson avatar Brandon Wilson | Feb 27, 2019 08:05:46
  • 1

    @brandonwilson You think we'll ever see JUSSE on Dr. Phil?

    Mark Armstrong avatar Mark Armstrong | Feb 26, 2019 17:43:06
    • 1

      @RealNegotiator I would definitely watch that one. I don't watch his show much, but Dr. Phil has a podcast and let's just say you get a different picture of Dr. Phil.

      Brandon Wilson avatar Brandon Wilson | Feb 26, 2019 16:48:41
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