"...make a resolution to refuse to
allow the media to dictate how you think and feel.
Be a critical thinker and evaluate what you hear and
how you will allow it to influence you."
to the weather forecast one frigid day, I realized how much we are
influenced by the catastrophic thinking of the media. The
weatherman reported, "The weather has brought more misery
to the St. Louis area."
Certainly, the weather was causing problems that day. An ice storm caused
car doors and locks to be frozen so that people had a great deal of trouble
getting into their cars. However, I thought, unless someone was in the
middle of nowhere with no cell phone and they were unable to open their car door
because of the ice, this was not "misery." Instead, I would call it an
"inconvenience." Most of us walked out to our cars to find that we
couldn't open the door, went back inside a warm house or office, and found some
solution to our problem.
As a child Cynthia's hyperactive behavior often annoyed others. Her teachers frequently reprimanded her in school. The other students called her "stupid" and refused to let her join them in activities. At home, her father criticized her and beat her with a belt whenever her parents received a negative report from school. Due to depression, her mother tended to ignore Cynthia's needs for emotional support and attention. As a result, she grew up expecting rejection from others. It seemed that no matter how hard she tried, all she experienced was rejection.
As an adult she had numerous unsuccessful relationships. She desperately wanted the acceptance to be found in a relationship; however, she perceived her partner's behavior negatively often thinking about how he wasn't as committed to the relationship and that she was just good enough until someone else came along. These thoughts led to hostility toward him and accusations "You don't care about me!" Due to her focus on her worries about losing him she did not focus on his needs and provide him with emotional support. Her partner tried to reassure her and comfort her at first but the constant negativity and hostility drained his ability to respond to her needs.