Changing All or Nothing Thinking

Posted by: Center for Growth Therapists

Cognitive Therapy in Philadelphia: Changing All or Nothing Thinking

How do I change ‘all or nothing thinking’? to change all or nothing thinking, start by identifying when you are thinking in all or nothing terms. You may want to write these all or nothing thoughts down in a journal. If you are unable to journal then just try to be more aware of your thought patterns.

When you catch yourself in a pattern, take notice of it. Then think of ways you can correct it. For example, if you have a thought such as “I messed up by eating this piece of cake, so now I might as well eat the whole cake.” Take note that this is ‘ all or nothing thinking’.

So instead, try saying ok this is my ‘all or nothing thinking’. I ate this piece of cake and I wish I had not but it does matter if I stop now. Eating one or two pieces is not the same as eating an entire cake and I am going to stop now.