How do you deal with personalization?

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1 year, 2 months ago.

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  • #121707


    I am not sure how to say this as well as I would like. One of my largest negative thinking traps is personalization. I know it is comorbid with other traps but for those I feel like I have a handle on how to address/replace them.

    Personalization feels like it stems from some level of narcissism – when I see others talking, I think they are talking about me. I have had full panic attacks in the past when someone has asked me to call them – thinking they have ‘discovered’ something (usually helping me discover new points of shame in the process.) I take innocuous statements and twist them into some type of attack, and when I do work up the nerve to respond to them I am 99% of the time met with confusion as to why I took it so personally.

    This has become such a pattern I hardly even notice it. Trying to explore the roots is painful – the hardest part of this entire program, as my childhood was deeply dysfunctional. I do have an inkling of where it comes from – I was raised in a radical form of evangelistic christianity where from my earliest memories I was singled out as the ‘bad seed’, an example for my siblings.

    But I don’t want to just throw up my hands and say oh well – I have narcissistic/borderline personality disorder. Or my upbringing has instilled something permanent in me.

    Just ‘thinking’ isn’t cutting it. How do I break such an ingrained thought pattern? What can I replace these thoughts with?

  • #121722


    Hi @vv98 . Welcome to the 30DSS Program and Companion Website!
    The Negative Thinking Traps are also discussed in another book I recommend called “Change Your Brain Change Your Life ” by Dr Daniel Amen. It’s not a Sobriety book. It IS really helpful for dealing with many thinking problems! Amen calls these ANTS, Automatic Negative Thoughts and he he has a lot to say about getting rid of them.
    First off, you must not believe them! They don’t tell us the Truth.
    Dr Amen recommends the book by Byron Katie “Loving What Is”. The 30 Day Sobriety Solution also recommends this book. In The Emotional Sobriety Solution, Day 23, the topic is revisited.
    Sounds like you already have a great deal of self awareness so you’re in a good position to continue your Journey to Thrive in Sobriety!!
    Onward! Sina

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