FAQs About Cognitive Behavioral Principles Used in this Program - On Second Thought: from Iffy to Witty Thoughts
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FAQs About Cognitive Behavioral Principles Used in this Program

interactive learning tool for kids - On Second Thought

FAQs About Cognitive Behavioral Principles Used in this Program

You may be asking yourself:  “What are cognitive behavioral principles as described in this program?

The first principle:  Based upon extensive research and wide acceptance from mental health providers, cognitive behavioral principles suggest that thoughts, feelings and behaviors are connected. For example, your child believes that he got the worst grade in the class, which may lend itself to his feeling sad.  In turn, this may result in his putting his head down on his desk, thus having the teacher and classmates wonder what’s wrong.

The second principle:  According to Dr. David Burns, researcher and author in the mental health field, many of us are guilty of unreasonable or irrational thoughts.  Dr. Burns offered an insightful and sophisticated list of unhelpful thoughts that he labeled cognitive distortions.  It is suggested that engaging in these distortions cause a person to reinforce negative thoughts or emotions.

Now, let’s look at the child’s thought in the above example.  If you recall, the child thinks, “I got the worst grade in the class”.  This thought resulted in his feeling sad, putting his head down on the desk and leaving everyone around him wondering what’s wrong.

  • How can we change how the child feels and what happens with what we now know?  The answer is by changing his thoughts . . .
  • So, going back to our example, what if instead the child thought, “Maybe I did o.k.”.  He may feel hopeful which may lend itself to his participating more in class.
  • How do we help your child achieve this?  By using idioms and cartoon like illustrations, we’ve created a very kid friendly way of teaching these cognitive behavioral principles to children.

Note:  Becoming aware of unhelpful thoughts and then challenging them will not happen overnight.  To this end, it is important for those involved to reinforce the principles outlined in this program as often as possible. 

Some children may have more difficulty letting go of their unhelpful thoughts.  In such cases, it may be beneficial to consult with a therapist who would be able to provide you and your child with additional support and guidance.