Manifestations of Beliefs

The beliefs hypothesized in the formulation manifested themselves in a number of ways. Alan's beliefs about the importance of control accounted for his self-blaming automatic thoughts and feelings of guilt regarding events at work. They also explained his persistent attempts to control his symptoms and memories, and his interpretation of his difficulties in doing so as evidence of weakness. His belief that lack of emotional control would lead to humiliation accounted for his complete social avoidance since becoming depressed and his high levels of anxiety when in the company of others. These beliefs also fed his marked cognitive avoidance, as shown in his efforts to suppress distressing intrusive thoughts and memories, and behavioral avoidance, as shown in his general inactivity.

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