How Does Cognitive Reframing Benefit Mental Health?

Reframing is a technique used in therapy to create a different way of looking at a situation, person, or relationship. It is a strategy therapists use to help people look at situations in a new light. Another way to understand this concept is to imagine looking through a camera lens. The picture seen can be changed to a view closer or further away. By changing it slightly, the picture is both viewed and experienced in different ways.

Example of Reframing

Some ways to shift focus and reframe something come from techniques therapists use. Look at some examples of shifting views:

  • Shift from passive to active: if someone says they doubt anything will change in a situation, it might be easier to suggest a question like how to take one small step forward to active voice
  • Shift from negative to positive: the hard part of reframing is looking at things with a positive twist. This can look like taking out the word ‘don’t,’ and using a question to ask how to work on something to change a little piece at a time
  • Shift from past to future: if a person says ‘never’ or ‘can/will never be,’ it might help to reframe it like a question that asks what it might look like to be successful in that situation rather than unsuccessful. Flipping the narrative can change focus to thinking about something differently
  • Shift from future to past: sometimes the future focus is too much. The past focus is just the right speed for a situation, including whether a person focuses on the negative part of making changes (‘this will never happen’) to thinking about what approach or change in focus can make this more successful

The biggest shift in perspective comes from looking at your situation from one of empowerment, not victimization. Sometimes it is difficult because it is a situation you are used to being in but you can change with the way you think about the situation. There are times in life where we are used to thinking and seeing life one way but if we shift perspective we can see things in a new light and start to make progress on those goals we want to achieve.

The Last Resort provides a safe, supportive environment for men in a retreat-like setting. Nature is an important component of recovery and healing. We strive to provide a place of enrichment that cultivates the inner as well as the outer journey of recovery. However you find your way to the Last Resort, we endeavor to provide a haven where you can journey through recovery feeling like your life and story have meaning and a purpose. Call us to find out more: 512-750-6750.