Psychology Tip of the Week

Psychology Tip of the Week #3: Beware of Mind Reading

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In Psychology Tip of the Week #2 I mentioned that “it can feel like proof that I’m bugging people” if anyone unsubscribes after receiving my blog posts. I chose these words carefully because, while it “can” feel that way, it doesn’t have to. The fact is, I don’t know why any given person might choose to unsubscribe, and while it is possible that some people feel “bugged,” others likely have other reasons.

It can be easy to read intentions into other people’s behavior, but it’s also a common thinking error that tends to make us feel bad without good reason. It’s called “mind reading.” When we engage in mind reading, we often assume whatever we fear is true. If someone doesn’t return a text, for example, it can be easy to think that person is mad at you and feel anxious, or that they’re being rude and feel mad, or that they don’t want to be friends anymore and feel sad. If you tend to be anxious, you may often assume people don’t like you or are mad at you.

This week, catch yourself making assumptions about what other people are thinking and see if there may be an alternative explanation.

Psychology Tip of the Week #2: Face a Fear

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After deciding to give your inboxes a little break , I’m back with psychology tip of the week #2. Turns out there was some kind of technical glitch that resulted in tip #1 being sent out 5 times in a week. Yikes! Here’s hoping the glitch has been fixed! In the spirit of making the most of what life brings, this week’s tip was inspired by the that glitch.

I have a confession to make. I feel anxious every time I post or send out a newsletter. I worry that I might inadvertently say something that would put people off or that I’m bugging people, and whenever someone unsubscribes, it can seem like proof that those worries are true.

Enter Psychology Tip of the Week #2: Face your fears. Avoidance increases anxiety while facing fears decreases them. I feel a little less anxious each time I send out a new post. The more regularly I post, the better. The longer I wait, the more the anxiety creeps back in. That glitch forced me to face my anxiety about bugging people head-on and my worst-case fears did not come true. This week, challenge your worry thoughts by facing something you feel anxious about.