Show Menu

therapy journal Cheat Sheet (DRAFT) by


This is a draft cheat sheet. It is a work in progress and is not finished yet.

Insights & Realiz­ations

Insight is the ability to acknow­ledge what is observed and ultimately to accept the truth. As you acknow­ledge and accept what is true, your life becomes grounded in the real world and true change becomes possible. Consider: What am I realizing now about my life? What am I discov­ering now about my life? What am I noticing about my life? Have I recently accomp­lished anything in my life? How do I feel about having accomp­lished these things?

Stress Management

Describe one of or the largest source of your stress, in detail. Take note of the symptoms (both physical and emotional) that you've experi­enced in response to stress.
Social support -- list three people who you can turn to for support, and how they can help. How can you use social support to ease one of your current stressors?
Emotional management -- when faced with unpleasant emotions, do you have any habits or tendencies that worsen the situation? List two ways that you've succes­sfully handled unpleasant emotions in the past.
Basic needs -- Consider any basic needs that you tend to neglect during periods of high stress. Describe the steps you can take to protect your basic needs during periods of high stress.

CBT Thought Record

I was/am at [locat­ion]. I was/am doing __. The intensity of these feelings are __%. The Negative Automatic Thought accomp­anying these feelings is __. What evidence do I have that supports the thought? What evidence do I have that counters it? An altern­ative thought I could think is __. The intensity of these feelings is now __%.


What are you worried about? How likely is it that your worry will come true? (Give examples of past experi­ences, or other evidence, to support your answer.) If your worry does come true, what's the worst that could happen? What's most likely to happen? If your worry does come true, what are the chances you'll be okay in: one week? One month? One year?

Focus on Feelings

How do I feel? The feelings that I feel are __. The physical sensations that I feel when I feel these feelings are __. The intensity of these feelings are about __%. When I feel these feelings I would describe the images that I have as like __. If I could give a color to these feelings it would be __. When I feel these feelings my inner conver­sation goes something like __. The behaviors that I tend to act out when I feel these feelings are __. The words that want to come out of my mouth when I feel these feelings are __. A previous time when I have felt similar feelings was __. My biggest fears in sharing my feelings with the people I'm closest to are __.

Reversing Core Beliefs

Core beliefs are hardened, rock-like thoughts and assump­tions that run in the 'backg­round' of your life; thoughts we hold to be true without any wiggle room. For example, "I'm never going to get better­" is a core belief. To reverse that, one could say, "I have the potential to get better." For this exercise, consider: What are my core beliefs? What is the impact on my life of having these beliefs? How could I reverse these beliefs? Is the opposite belief true, or truer than the original?

Self-image & Beliefs

Either in the context of a situation or just how you're feeling, write down beliefs you have about yourself, starting with "I see myself as ..." You will likely consider the more “negative” attributes of your self percep­tion, but also consider the more “positive” attributes as well. After you've completed your list, affirm to yourself: "I am not these beliefs. I am the observer of these belief­s."


Make a list of a few 'miracles' you want to happen in the future. Write a blurb about each one and how your life would be better if it happens. For each miracle, make a list of: five things keeping it from happening, five positive things that encourage its happening, and five things you can do to reduce the barriers and strengthen the positive influe­nces.

Thinking Errors

Ignoring the good, paying more attention to bad things, and disreg­arding anything good that happens. Blowing things up, making a big deal out of something small, or making something somewhat bad seem like the worst thing ever. Fortune telling, thinking you know what will happen in the future, normally negative predic­tions. Mind reading, believing that you know what someone else is thinking, or their motives for doing something, without enough inform­ation or evidence. Negative labeling, having a negative belief about yourself and believing that it applies to everything you do. Self-b­laming, blaming yourself for anything that goes wrong around you, even if you had nothing to do with it, or no control over it. Feelings as facts, thinking that if you're feeling something, it must be true. "­Sho­uld­" statements, believing and insisting that things have to be a certain way.

Problem Solving

Make a list of the things that you feel upset about right now. For each, list several things you can do to gain control of the situation.

Eval. & Letting Go of Neg. Emotions

Context: __. The Feeling: __. I have been holding these feelings for __. Holding on to these feelings have cost me __. What these feelings have done to me is __. The payoff in keeping these feelings has been __. The possible difference it could make in my life if I could let these feelings go is __. The fears I have in letting go of these feelings are __. Is it possible that I could let go of these feelings? Am I willing to let go of these feelings? When? In this moment are they gone? If I had the power to replace those feelings with something new I would like to feel __. And I would like to tell myself things such as __. Could I let those feelings in? Am I willing to let those feelings in? In this moment are those feelings present? [Behav­ior­s/w­ord­s/p­revious time]