DBT Self-Help Resources: DBT Diary: Wise Mind
One of the core skills of DBT therapy is mindfulness, a practice that has a lot of hype in self improvement and recovery.
In DBT, the aim of mindfulness is slightly different; not just to become in the moment, but to gain a sense of wise mind: the part of our mind where emotions and rational thinking merge together.
The table above can help to identify the states of mind.
Its not healthy to stay in either rational or wise mind all the time. making decisions in rational mind can lead to unhappiness when your emotional needs are not properly taken into account. At the other end of the scale, making decisions based solely on emotions can lead to lots of interpersonal chaos!
For example, when making a shopping list, wise mind is important- if using rational mind, you may buy just enough food at the cheapest price, but would miss out treats and things that are important to wellbeing. If making the same shopping list in emotional mind, you may end up with a basket full of treats but no proper meals.
Wise mind is important to help us find balance.
DBT uses mindfulness to help us get to wise mind- the state where both what you should do and what you want to do are taken into account.
The journal above was created as a quick reminder to stay in wise mind. Created with acrylic paint, conte crayon and fineliners.
I used the image of a dual portrait, (symbolically, like a venn diagram) to show the fusion of different aspects of personality.
People with Borderline Personality Disorder often feel like “two people”, as the definition between emotional and rational mind can be extreme, and poor impulse control makes it difficult to find a balance.
If you need help identifying states of mind, you can use the Wise Mind Worksheet above.
Source: Michelle Morgan Art