Insert catchy title here
Well, as my first post I felt that there was a lot of pressure and expectation to get the title just right and that fact will be the subject of my first post. Let’s talk about the word “should” and other fallacies that we use in our everyday lives, or also known as cognitive distortions.
Let’s start with what cognitive distortion is. Grohol (2019) describes these as “ways that our mind convinces us of something that isn’t really true.” Some of you may know them as the little voice in your head that whispers negative thoughts and beliefs about yourself in your ear… These distortions feed into that negative cycle which can lead a person to become mired and unable to break free of this vicious cycle. These distortions can also act as a filtering lens’ to view the world.
As Grohol(2019) outlines in his article that there are 15 prevalent distortions that are commonly experienced by individuals. I’m sure that many can identify with more than one of the distortions identified. Here is the list: filtering, polarized thinking, overgeneralization, jumping to conclusions, catastrophizing, personalization, control fallacies, the fallacy of fairness, blaming, shoulds, emotional reasoning, the fallacy of change, global labeling, always being right, and lastly heaven’s reward fallacy.
Let’s now look at the word ‘should’. The dictionary defines should as a verb that is “used to indicate obligation, duty, or correctness, typically when criticizing someone’s actions.” Obligation, duty, and correctness are all sweeping generalizations that are based on an individual’s perception of a situation. Applying the notion that I “should” have a catchy blog title implies that the objective of the blog post / or the blog itself will not be fully realized. That’s a whole lot of pressure, stress, and drama for the title of a blog. Why do we do this? A million-dollar question that will have a different answer for everyone.
Questions I asked myself as I was sitting in front of my computer contemplating my catchy title sounded much like this – What is the worst thing that can possibly happen if my title is in fact boring? Answer: Nothing. Will my livelihood be in any sort of jeopardy with a boring blog title? Answer: Ummm, nope. What happens if someone finds my post and likes it? Answer: Holy smokes! That would be nice! So, I chose to move on from this distortion that was preventing me from creating this post and proudly kept the ‘catchy’ title.
When ‘shoulds’ creep in, take a pause, ask some simple questions of the situation before it stops you in your tracks.
Grohol, J. M. (2019, June 24). 15 Common Cognitive Distortions. Retrieved 18 May 2020, from https://psychcentral.com/lib/15-common-cognitive-distortions