Cognitive distortions or unhelpful thinking styles refer to the way our minds convince us of something when it is most likely to be false or inaccurate. These false perceptions frequently perpetuate negative thinking habits, and they may cause serious damage to our confidence and ability to succeed.
Everyone experiences cognitive distortions to some degree, especially during times of stress. For example, an athlete under competitive pressure might be constantly distracted by thoughts related to how everyone will look down on him if he loses. A sales executive may conclude that she is a failure for not being able to meet the quarterly sales target.
There are different (but related) cognitive distortions, and these include:
Hungarian-American psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, who popularized the term Flow and demonstrated how anyone could achieve focused contentment, died recently. In light of his passing, I felt compelled to write this post as his work has profoundly influenced both my life and coaching philosophy.
The Psychology of Flow
Flow is a state of mind in which a person becomes fully immersed in an activity. In this mental state, people are experiencing joy as they become fully involved and focused on what they are doing.
“The ego falls away. Time flies. Every action, movement, and thought follows inevitably from the previous one, like playing jazz. Your whole being is involved, and you’re using your skills to the utmost,”