Automatic thoughts are the thoughts and images that involuntarily pop into our conscious (or just below if they are habitual). They make up how we “read” a situation and are assumed to be “True” at the time they are generated. Reactive behavior is based on automatic thinking.Understanding your automatic thoughts can influence change in a variety of situations.
When interpreting the cause of someone’s behavior we are more likely to think the reason has more to do with a personal reason than attribute it to a situational factor. For example, when a friend fails to call you, you are more likely to see their behavior as disinterested, rude, carelessness or disorganized, rather than to weigh heavily that they may be busy at work, talking to someone else, in a quiet or too nosey place or with no cell phone reception.
Dealing with disappointment can be disheartening to say the least. No one likes to be confronted with the revelation of “NO”. No one likes to be told what they wanted is not available, that their needs will not be honored or what they expected is not likely to occur.
However, how you handle yourself in these situations can determine just how far your level of disappointment goes, whether it stops at a healthy level of frustration, or whether it escalates to more intense levels of anger and hostility.