Depression: Positive Data Log - Journal
Posted 04 May 2005 - 05:20 PM
For a while now I have been feeling like being a depressive is a pretty selfish thing. I know it is an illness, and I am not trying to beat myself up here, but I see that I am often looking at my problems and trying to understand everything. At times I must come across as very self-centered to others, and even to myself - I get tired of always trying to figure out what is wrong with me and my life! So I look forward to turning my thinking in a more positive direction. Thanks again!!!! :)
- starla1979 likes this
ados for Depression Forums Administration
Original DF join date: October 25, 2001
Posted 27 April 2005 - 09:45 PM
POSITIVE DATA LOG (JOURNAL)
WHAT IS A POSITIVE DATA LOG?
A positive data log is a list of good things you notice about yourself or the world. You write these down on your Positive Data Log sheet every day and re-read them several times a day.
HOW DOES A POSITIVE DATA LOG HELP?
A Positive Data Log helps you build a healthy, balanced picture of yourself, your behavior, your life and/or the world in general. It helps you gather information for the balanced thought? column of the Thought Record.
When you are feeling depressed, angry, guilty or anxious, you are likely to have a strong deeply held negative picture of yourself or your world. You may believe that you are incompetent or flawed, or that the world is a terrible place. You may tell yourself this in a variety of ways-for example:
I can't do anything right.?
I am a terrible/parent/son/daughter/ employee.?
I can't take care of myself.?
People are cruel¦they always end up hurting you/me.?
It's not fair.?
The world is a terrifying place.?
Believing these things about yourself or the world is likely to make you more depressed, angry, anxious, worried, guilty, etc. You may have held this belief deep down for a long time without even realizing it. You may also have been gathering evidence that this belief is true for a long time-and ignoring or discounting anything that proves the belief is not always true. All this happens without you even being aware of it.
Positive Data Log will help you become more conscious of things you may have been overlooking. It will help you balance out your ideas and your facts so that you can come to an informed decision about whether your negative beliefs are accurate. And it will help you find the moments of joy, satisfaction and hope that may exist in your day-to-day life.
WHAT WILL I NEED TO DO A POSITIVE DATA LOG?
You will need a journal or a spiral bound notebook to keep with you throughout the day. It is best if it a size that will fit in your backpack, purse or pocket.
WHAT DO I DO WITH THE INFORMATION THAT I COLLECT?
Read each and every item over to yourself as often as possible-at least twice a day. Share the items in the group or with someone who is supportive of your efforts to help yourself-a friend or your therapist. Let each item sink into your consciousness and enjoy the feel? of it. Refer to your Positive Data Log to help yourself come up with Balanced or Alternative thoughts.
HOW LONG DO I HAVE TO KEEP MY POSITIVE DATA LOG?
Think about how many years your negative beliefs have had to sink into your brain! Can you see why doing data logs for one or two weeks will probably not be enough. Positive data logs are major investments in time-both on a day-to-day basis and over weeks and months-you may have to do it for a long time to build up a supply of experiences to support a new, alternate, more balanced belief.
WHAT IF I CAN'T DOT IT?
First figure out why you think you can't do it.
Is it because you think you won't know what to write? Talk with the group facilitator or your therapist to help you figure out exactly what kinds of things to write down. Then test out whether you will know what to write or not by starting to write things down as they come to you.
Is it because you procrastinate or can't organize yourself well? Set a time each day when you will do your data log. Then think of a little reward you can give yourself for spending time on your data log. Praise and encourage yourself for your work, too.
Is it because you think it won't help? There are no guarantees that anything you do will work. The question is, are you willing to try something that has worked for others? The combination of support, information, hard work and persistence is what will give you the greatest chance of making progress in overcoming your depression, anxiety, anger, etc. and having a life that feels fulfilling and worthwhile.
God will give you no more than you can handle. This is all a test to see if you are really ready for the good things that are going to come your way. All this pain is going to come back and make me stronger.-Clarence Clemmons 1942-2011
Everything I know, I know because I love. Leo Tolstoy War and Peace
Posted 01 November 2012 - 11:39 AM
Posted 16 April 2013 - 04:28 AM
I tend to write in a journal every now and again when feelings get really overwhelming - but sometimes I also have no idea what to write. This is a great outline on how to get started when I don't know where to start. Thank you :)
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