The theme of stereotypes (patterns, patterns) of perception, thinking and behavior is so vast that it can be studied throughout life. But what if stereotypes prevent you from living the life you want now? After studying a lot of materials, I came to the conclusion that stereotypes of thinking possess the greatest deterrent and harmful force, as perception and behavior result from thinking processes. What is a stereotype? It is a habitual, established pattern of behavior or thinking in any situation. This model a person takes from the past experience of similar situations and applies unconsciously, mechanically. From this definition, with the naked eye, it can be seen that stereotyped thinking deprives a person not only of new sensations and opportunities, but also of development prospects. Who wants to get stuck in a repetitive circle of reactions and thought routes? I think, not someone who aspires to self-development. So let’s figure out how to destroy stereotypes of thinking.
Classification of stereotypes of thinking
In order to defeat the enemy, you need to know him in person. You can destroy a stereotype when you have precisely defined it. I offer a brief description of the five most common stereotypes of thinking.
Polar thinking makes a person see life in black and white, each incident gluing either a “good” or “bad” label. While we live in a world where hundreds of thousands of halftime events, people with polar thinking are forced to choose from an extremely limited set of assessments. As is known, nothing is happening in the world either bad or good, everything becomes so only because of our assessments.
Pessimism and maximalism stem from polar thinking. This stereotype is extremely harmful, as it leads to biased perception, inadequate reactions to what is happening, erroneous decisions and low self-esteem.
Excessive generalization is harmful to humans. This stereotype of thinking manifests itself in the labeling of self, surrounding and situations, and the labels are chosen based on a single situation (for example, unsuccessful acquaintance with the girl) and become part of a person’s world view (“I do not know how to meet girls”). With this thinking, a person closes most of the doors for himself, that is, opportunities, loses self-esteem. falls into depression. The person suffering from this stereotype creates an unchangeable image of himself and can live with it all his life – this is called inflexible thinking. While in a healthy situation a person is a process that is constantly changing and renewing.
In selective perception, a person concentrates only on certain aspects of a situation, considering them to be significant, and discards everything else for unimportance. Such a one-sided perception leads to the formation of rigid stereotypes, the inability to perceive any opinions that differ from one’s own. As a result, a person develops dogmatic thinking, when his own views and beliefs are elevated to absolute and not subject to criticism and transformation. The extreme degree of dogmatism is fanaticism, which represents an unshakable devotion to an idea or activity, full concentration on it and the absence of any other goals.
The signs of selective thinking are: the conviction of fanaticism about the correctness of only their views, the inability to critically analyze them, the immutability of these views, the lack of interest in everything that does not correspond to them, the evaluation of information based only on the authority of the source, stubbornness and stubbornness in upholding one’s convictions.
Categorization is a scourge of so many people, a stereotype that must be destroyed by any means. The habit of attributing all people,... events and phenomena to categories, generates a generalization and ignoring the individual qualities of the object. In this case, each category is endowed with a certain unchanged assessment (“all hard workers are honest people”, “all the rich are thieves and deceivers”). Based on categories, a person loses objectivity, and with it, and opportunities for communicating with interesting people. undeservedly referred to the category of dishonest or deprived of intelligence (because all blondes are “stupid”).
Another disastrous stereotype of thinking is unreasonable expectations. From any event, person, from the future as a whole, a person with this stereotype always expects something: either bad or good. Losing objectivity, such a person attaches any event to excessive importance (or rather, the result of this event), which leads to the emergence of hope and more often – disappointment, frustration, resentment. Especially the expectations in relations with loved ones are hindered: a person in advance builds a system of expectations from a partner, and if he does not fulfill them (and usually they are not feasible, because they are not based on the real capabilities of the partner, but on his idealized image), experiences negative emotions. This leads to quarrels, misunderstandings, attempts to remake the partner and often to break the relationship.
Expectations can be of two kinds – the first ones are based on any knowledge (experience), for example, “30-year-old men are ready to create a family,” and the latter are baseless, based on fantasies and belief in ephemeral luck.
How to destroy stereotypes of thinking
A universal tool for dealing with stereotypes is the technique of breaking the template. about which I told before. As for particular cases, here are some tips on how to get rid of the stereotypes described above:
If polar thinking and pessimism is your problem, reduce or nullify the detrimental impact of this stereotype will help the method of comparison. Do not be surprised at how simple it is, because, in fact, the very stereotyped thinking is primitive. The method is to compare the existing unfavorable situation with another, more negative, which could happen to you. This does not solve the problem completely, but it greatly reduces the negative effect of polar thinking.
Sometimes polar thinking leads to an overstatement of the demands on oneself, on maximalism. Then the person sets himself too large-scale, hard-to-fulfill goals and severely criticizes himself in case of failure. Or does not proceed to achieve them out of fear. turning into a dreamer. In this case, the advice is to set more realistic goals, work on self-esteem, and begin to act – by accomplishing the tasks, you can break the stereotype.
To combat the stereotypes of unreasonable expectations and categorization will help children’s perception. Children are so open that they perceive everything as it is, accept people regardless of their financial situation, profession and experience of success and failure. Try on yourself a model of children’s thinking – be open to everything and draw conclusions about a person only after you communicate with him, and not based on your ideas about what he is.
If you are constantly deceived in your expectations, you will need a gradual work to destroy this stereotype. Whenever you catch yourself on expectations, ask questions: “what are my expectations in this situation based on – on real prerequisites or on my desire to get something?”, “Do not I create circumstances that make it difficult for me to fulfill my expectations? “,” do people understand what I expect of them and why do I feel irritation, if expectations are not justified? “.