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The Thinking Feeling Behaving Connection | Orlando CBT Therapist Explains

cbtOrlando CBT Therapist shares, “what you think about, and the thoughts that go through your mind have a direct effect on how you feel and behave.” When you are happy and feeling good, what thoughts are you thinking and how are you behaving? And when you are feeling anxious, angry or depressed, what kinds of thoughts are you having and how do you think you might be behaving?

As the ancient Greek philosopher, Epictetus so wisely wrote in 101 A.D.:

It’s not what happens to you, but how you react to it that matters.”

Here’s an example of what that means. Imagine for a moment that your boss just asked to meet with you. Below are four different examples of thoughts you might have about this situation:

Thought 1      Great! Maybe he wants to praise me for my last report.

Emotion:        Happy

Behavior:        Prepare for the meeting

Physical:         Quite relaxed


Thought 2      Oh no! He is going to criticize me for my work. I’ll probably get fired!

Emotion:         Anxious

Behavior:        Pacing. Can’t concentrate or prepare for the meeting.

Physical:         Tense. Sick feeling in stomach.


Thought 3      I can’t believe this! I worked really hard on this report. I just know he won’t be happy. He is such a jerk. I should just quit.

Emotion:         Angry

Behavior:        Slam the door. Can’t focus or prepare for the meeting.

Physical:         Racing heart, tight muscles, red face.


Thought 4      I don’t really care about this job, so it doesn’t matter. Nothing I ever do is good enough anyway. Why bother?

Emotion:         Depressed

Behavior:        Sit and brood. Do no preparations for the meeting.

Physical:         Tired. Can’t seem to move.

Can you see from the above example that how and what we think about a situation determines how we behave and how we feel physically? When we repeatedly think in negative and catastrophic ways, emotions like anxiety, depression and anger may result and contribute to unpleasant physical symptoms and unhealthy behaviors. This is where Orlando CBT therapist can help. 

One way to lift these negative emotions and unpleasant physical sensations and get you to behave in a productive way is to challenge those unhelpful thoughts. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) teaches us not to simply accept these thoughts as true but to question them further. Some of the ways your Orlando CBT therapist at GroundWork Counseling may ask you to challenge your anxious, depressed or angry thoughts is by asking you to consider the following questions:

  • What evidence do you have for your prediction?
  • What evidence do you have against your prediction?
  • What’s the worst thing that could happen? Could you still cope?
  • What is the best possibly outcome?
  • What is the most likely outcome?
  • What are the consequences of worrying about this situation?
  • What is a more helpful way to look at the situation?
  • What would you say to a friend who is going through this situation?

At GroundWork Counseling, an Orlando CBT therapist will teach you how to keep a thought diary and help you to dispute and replace your unhelpful thoughts that are contributing to your feelings of anxiety, depression and anger. By working together, we can help you to increase positive emotions, optimism and resilience and help you to let go of unhelpful thoughts, feelings and behaviors.

*When seeking Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) it is important to discuss your therapist’s training and certification in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to insure the services you are receiving is evidenced-based CBT. At GroundWork Counseling, our therapist are trained in, and have received certification in the evidenced based practices of CBT.


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GroundWork Counseling, LLC
400 S Orlando Ave #206
Maitland, FL 32751

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