DBT Skills: Wise Mind

I have begun a new DBT Group through a local, peer-led organization call Dialectical Living!  This organization specifically provides DBT Groups to individuals with BPD/Emotion Regulation Disorder (ERD) for a fairly affordable rate. This organization helps fill the huge DBT and BPD services gap that is in Toronto. Dialectical Living is also going to be offering individual DBT counselling soon! I am also very pleased to add that I am being trained by Dialectical Living to become a teacher in the DBT Groups and as an individual counsellor 🙂

So, I had my first Group on Tuesday and we talked about Wise Mind. Briefly, here is Wise Mind…

Our home practice was to notice when we enter each of these mind sets. I would like to share with you when I have used Wise Mind within the last few days.

Situation: A car alarm was going off in the distance for almost 30 minutes at 11pm.

My initial feelings: I found myself getting very aggravated and passing judgments such as, “What kind of person lets their car alarm go for that long?” and “What kind of people live in this neighborhood that car alarms are constantly going off?”

How I used Wise Mind: I noticed these thoughts and decided to radically accept that the alarm was going off and felt grateful that the alarm was in the distance and not right outside my building because there are people who are closer to the sound who must be bothered by it more. I noticed the sound and then refocused on watching Bones. This made me feel calm and satisfied.

In this situation, I also used the DBT skills ACCEPTS, Mindfulness, Radical Acceptance, and Distraction.

I think it is a great exercise to notice when you are in Rational/Reasonable Mind, Emotion Mind, and Wise Mind. Already, in the 3 days that I have been tracking this I am noticing that I spend a lot of time in Emotion Mind than in Rational/Reasonable Mind. I seem to alternate between Emotion Mind and Wise Mind throughout the day. When I enter Emotion Mind I do feel myself trying to pull myself away from it and shift into Wise Mind which I didn’t feel myself doing a year ago before I began learning DBT.

If you live in Toronto or the GTA, have BPD/ERD and would like to attend the next Intro to DBT Group with Dialectical Living please contact Julie at julie@dialecticalliving.ca. The next 10-week course will begin early next year! Who knows, maybe I’ll be teaching it?!

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10 thoughts on “DBT Skills: Wise Mind

  1. I really like that graphic you have put into this post. It is something I can truly relate to. I felt growing up, and in my younger years, I was really a reasonable thinker. As I became more involved in various relationships in my life, I feel like I jumped right onto emotional thinking and by-passed wise thinking without even noticing. Obviously, it is critical to be in that “wise” mode, but I find myself really struggling with that.

    • I struggle with it as well. Today I even found myself crying in the bathroom with the door locked listening to sad music. Not very wise but I kept reminding myself that I was in emotion mind and that awareness alone probably helped me not escalate as far as I could have. It’s all about practice.

      Thank you for sharing your experience. 🙂

  2. This is awesome. I think everyone around us should propagate this and ask them to take this sort of training. I believe this will help not only in one area but holistically. Which can prove very effective for every individual.

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