||Saturday, February 20, 2021 at 7:59 AM
1. Do you believe that if you change a person's thinking you can change the way they behave and feel?
Before social workers start working with their clients, they should be aware of the complex links between cognition, behaviors and feelings. In chapter 6 of his textbook, Walsh speaks about cognitive theory, which emerged as an attempt to re-emphasize the importance of unconscious mental processes, which behaviorists had traditionally devalued. Cognitive theory is based on the fundamental assumption that "it is a person's conscious thoughts that are primary determinants of feelings and behavior". According to Walsh , an activating event leads to the emergence of thoughts and beliefs, which also result in emotional reactions and action.
Based on this information, I certainly believe that, by changing the client's thoughts, I can also the way he/she feels and behaves. As a strong supporter of cognitive theory, I am convinced that all thinking, emotional, and behavioral processes are closely intertwined. Cognitive theory posits that human thoughts emerge as a result of the person's interactions with the surrounding reality. The thoughts represent human reactions to the external world . Also, these thoughts shape the basis for the development of specific emotional and behavioral reactions. In other words, it is under the influence of thoughts that individuals interpret the reality, develop strong emotional reactions, and eventually behave/act. Yet, no one is secured from mistakes. No one can have an absolutely objective view of the world. Misperceptions and wrong thoughts are not uncommon. Such cognitive misperceptions lead to the development of thoughts and behaviors that do not anything to do with the objective reality . Consequently, the goal of a social worker is to influence clients' thoughts in ways that would make them more realistic. By helping the client to develop awareness of the distorted thoughts and cognitive misperceptions, the social worker fosters subsequent changes in emotions and behaviors . Eventually, these cognitive changes will lead to the client's enhanced emotional wellbeing.
2. Can you identify some of the distortions you have? How do they affect you?
Cognitive distortions represent one of the most common sources of misperceptions . The misperceptions have considerable effects on our vision of the world. Cognitive distortions imply the development of biased reactions to the surrounding reality. One of my greatest cognitive distortions is that I always try to be right. The distortion has tremendous effects on my professional performance, because a social worker must avoid personal bias and act in the interests of the client rather than trying to emphasize the righteousness or wrongfulness of somebody's opinions. Another problem with me is that I cannot always look beyond the traditional boundaries of a situation and create a complete picture of available resources. As a result, as Walsh writes, I can hold a strong belief that I cannot access and use certain resources, while they remain widely and readily available to me.
3. Discuss the types of clients of whom any of the interventions described in this chapter would be appropriate or not appropriate. What are the differences between the two types of clients?
Cognitive interventions can be used with a diversity of clients. For instance, Walsh proposes educational interventions for children and adolescents. Attribution development interventions can be successfully applied with the clients who do not realize their goal attainment potentials and attribute their failures to misconceptions of the external environment. Yet, the principal distinction of cognitive intervention from other theories and models is that they "require clients to be active in resolving their problems, and they need to practice solution strategies first with the social worker and then in their natural settings". In other words, cognitive interventions will hardly be helpful for the clients, who are not willing to actively engage in the social process and foster positive changes in their cognition. The clients differ considerably from their peers, who have a strong intention to enhance their wellbeing and understand that the success of the proposed intervention depends only on their willingness to accept assistance and change
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