Gain Control Over Negative Self-Talk
“I’m so stupid.”
“I’m always messing things up.”
“No one wants to be with me.”
For those with ADD, these types of negative beliefs are common. They become ingrained from experiencing continual frustrations at school and work, the cruel things that others say during moments of frustration, and from the bullying that many children with ADD endure.
It’s important that ADD people learn to gain control over these thoughts because how we think moment by moment has a huge impact on how we behave in the future.
• An ADD child or teen may believe that they’ll fail in school — because that was their experience at some point in the past — so they will not try.
• An ADD adult may believe that they are doomed to have poor relationships — again, because that was their experience in the past — so they will engage in the same, repetitive behaviors that impairs their ability to relate to others.
What are Automatic Negative Thoughts (ANTs)?
These types of negative thoughts often just happen, so we call them Automatic Negative Thoughts. When we take the first letter from each word, it spells “ANT.”
Whenever ANTs creep into the mind, they must be killed. We kill them by talking back to them; if we don’t, ANTs become the seeds of future anxiety and depression. Some people say they have trouble talking back to their ANTs because they feel that they are lying to themselves. Initially they believe that all of their thoughts must be true.
Killing ADD ANTs:
1. Whenever an automatic negative thought enters your mind, train yourself to recognize its type and write it down (see types below).
2. Talk back to the ANT – this takes away its power so you can gain control over your moods and feel better.
1. “All or nothing” thinking:
Thoughts that are all good or all bad.
2. “Always” thinking:
Thinking in words like always, never, no one, everyone, every time, everything.
3. Focusing on the negative:
Only seeing the bad in a situation.
4. Fortune telling:
Predicting the worst possible outcome to a situation with little or no evidence for it.
5. Mind reading:
Believing that you know what another person is thinking even though they haven’t told you.
6. Thinking with your feelings:
Believing negative feelings without ever questioning them.
7. Guilt beatings:
Thinking in words like should, must, ought, or have to.
Attaching a negative label to yourself or to someone else.
Blaming someone else for the problems you have.
We Can Help
Get a Customized Solution: Like many other mental health conditions, ADD is not just a single and simple disorder; therefore, treatment is not a one-size-fits-all solution. Each of the seven types of ADD requires a different treatment plan. What works for one person with ADD may not work for another—or could even make the symptoms worse!
Amen Clinics is here to help you understand your brain and provide treatment options that address more than just symptoms. Help younger children kill their ANTs by repeating the negative thought back to them and then asking, “Can you be absolutely sure that this thought is true?”
For more information please call 888-288-9834 or tell us more online to start a customized treatment plan.