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Balancing Thoughts

Balancing Thoughts are things that you can say to yourself to help put negative, anxious or self-critical thoughts into perspective. Using them is a standard technique from cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) which is a helpful approach for dealing with difficult emotions, situations and experiences.

Try this! Over the next week identify any anxious or self-critical thoughts that go through your head and write them down. For each such thought think of a Balancing Thought that you could say to yourself to help put your negative or self-critical thought into perspective.

The Friend Technique: If it is helpful then imagine what you might say to a friend in your situation, or else imagine what a helpful friend might say to you.

Remember! Your aim in creating a Balancing Thought is to put the negative thought in perspective in a realistic way. It is important that your Balancing Thought is realistic and doesn't make false claims. The aim with a Balancing Thought is often to modify or point out exaggerations in the original thought. Although the modified thought may still have a negative element, it is not so severe as it was previoulsy and you can cope with it effectively. A Balancing Thought often takes the edge off a negative thought. It puts things in perspective.

What to Do with Balancing Thoughts: Once you have created Balancing Thoughts, say them to yourself to see if they help you to feel better or act more constructively in your situation.

Download the Balancing Thoughts form below
You can use it to create your Balancing Thoughts for the week!

Download in Word Format:
Download in PDF Format:


Balancing Thoughts Form
Word Version


Balancing Thoughts Form -
PDF Version



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