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Mental Health TreatmentRecovery ExercisesHow to Self-Diagnose - BlueSky Behavioral Health

May 18, 2022by BlueSky

If you want to reach the Free Zone it is crucial you learn how to run a Self-Diagnostic. Self-awareness is the antidote to impulsive, self-destructive actions. Learning how to become aware of the cause of mood and behavior changes is a skill that you can develop and put to good use. 

A Self-Diagnostic is a set of questions that you can use to overcome problems you might be having by putting your feelings into words. It can help you to determine what happened to cause your mood to change without warning. 

Read each set of Self-Diagnostic questions that appear on the next page. If you can unequivocally answer one of the questions in each set with a, “Yes,” then check the “Any Yes” box for that set. Go through all of the questions and then total up the number of checked Any Yes boxes. Finally, rate your confidence in your answers on the scale provided. Rate it as “High” if you are very confident in your answers and do not have any doubts. 

If you checked two or more Any Yes boxes or you checked the Any Yes box of “Conditioning check” and your confidence level was at least Medium, then you can assume that your recent environment exposures caused your emotions to destabilize. 

If you have checked more than three boxes but a rated confidence level of low or very low, you are probably feeling confused because you have difficulty reading or trusting your feelings. 

If you have not checked any boxes and rated your confidence as Medium or higher, then you can assume that your recent environmental exposure is not causing your mood fluctuations. In this case, ask yourself whether you anticipate any future events that may be worrying you or whether you feel physically uncomfortable or ill. If both of these things are negative, then consider discussing your feelings with a supporter or with a therapist. 

Psychotraumatic memories of images, feelings, and actions that hurt you link past and present environments. When a present climate evokes an emotional response from you that exceeds that which a person free of psychotraumatic past would experience, it does so because it has activated old memories. These memories may not be fully recalled. In many cases, people report only uncomfortable, disconnected emotions that make the present situation feel worse than it should. As discussed in earlier chapters, it is at these moments, when you are being “attacked” from within, that you are at the greatest risk for impulsive action. Learning how to perform a self-diagnostic (that is, Objectify) when you observe that your mood is changing for the worse it will help you prevent impulsive, self-destructive actions. 

Self-Help Skill: Running a Self-Diagnostic 

Whenever you find your mood shifting without notice, run the following Self-Diagnostic to identify the environmental characteristics that caused the mood change. In order to do this, review what you have been exposed to since before you noticed a change in your mood and behavior. You may need to go back a few hours, days, or even weeks. 

People

check

Whom have I seen and interacted with? Anyone from my family? Anyone who hurt me in the past? Anyone who recently put me down? Anyone whom I had an argument with? Anyone that I hurt or misused?

                                                                                                      Any Yes [    ]

Location

check

Have I been to some place where I did addictive activities in the past? Have I been somewhere that reminded me of my childhood? Have I been somewhere I felt confined or trapped?

                                                                                                      Any Yes [    ]

Needs

check

Did I feel needy? Did I want, desire or need something? Have my needs gone 

unmet?                 

                                                                                                      Any Yes [    ]

Demand

check

Was I facing demands that stressed me? What were my responsibilities? Did these demands make me feel overwhelmed and likely to fail?

                                                                                                      Any Yes [    ]

Expectation

check

What was expected of me by others? Did I know what was expected? Did I meet those expectations? Did I resent them? Did these expectations feel harsh or unfair?           

                                                                                                      Any Yes [    ]

Reward

check

Was someone using the promise of rewards to motivate me? Was I working to earn a reward?

                                                                                                      Any Yes [    ]

Punishment 

check

Was someone threatening me with consequences if I did not do what they wanted? Was I expecting to be punished for something that I did or did not do? Did I receive a punishment (for example, speeding tickets, loss of job, loss of relationship) because of my actions?

                                                                                                      Any Yes [    ]

Activity 

check

What types of activities were I engaged in (work, play, social, and so on)? Did I feel uneasy about doing these activities? Whom was I doing these activities with? Did I feel uneasy about being with them? Were the outcomes of these activities negative? 

                                                                                                      Any Yes [    ]

Object

check

What objects (tools, equipment, books, clothing, and so on) was I using during my activities? Was there anything unique or unusual about any of those objects? Did those objects make me feel uneasy?                        Any Yes [    ]
 

Conditioning check

 

Did anything remind me of my psychotraumatic past? Did I feel as if I were in a fog as if a memory was “taking control” of me? Did I feel as if I was repeating past, negative actions? Did the situation feel as if it were from my dark past?

Number of Any Yes answers _________ out of 10

Confidence Level:   High        Medium        Low        Very Low

At BlueSky Behavioral Health we know your first Self-Diagnostic may seem daunting. We also know the immense value of being able to perform your own self-assessment. Allow our staff of health professionals to assist you with any questions you may have along the way. At BlueSky, we take pride in helping others and it is our mission to help you and many others live their happiest and healthiest lives possible.

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      BlueSky Behavioral Health provides personalized care for mental health issues and addictions. Our dedicated staff will create an individualized treatment and recovery plan for you or your loved one. We offer Supportive Independent Living with case management and life skills training for those who need a respite away from home but do not need a full residential stay.

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