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Knowing your Frame of Mind

Updated: Mar 24, 2020

Mind frame is often seen as something that comes in many different forms. DBT however, believes there are three frames of mind. Three different gears that our brains can run in. Sounds too simple, right? But I find it helpful and actually agreeable once it’s explained. We have our rational mind, our emotional mind and our wise mind. And they work a little something like this:

Another top quality Annie depiction. Now we may think, “oh to live in the wise mind all the time would be wonderful”, or whichever mind is your preference. But we need all three! If we were in a life threatening situation we need our rational mind. Say we’re walking alone late a night and a scary looking person is walking towards us our rational mind says cross the road, keep a distance so we do. We don’t need our emotional mind to stop and make us think, gosh I hope I don’t offend this person by walking away. Similarly, our emotional mind is what we make our relationships with. Whether they’re built on love, lust or hate. They’re initiated by our emotional mind. So why do we need the wise mind then! For more complicated matters. I nearly always make decisions with my emotional mind and have to think to myself, stop am I using my wise mind? Example, my boiler is broke its winter and my house is freezing. I am angry and upset so I ring the landlord. My emotional mind wants me to shout and cry at him. My rational mind wants me to explain rationally why this is not good for me. But the wise mind, the wise mind combines these to make a good strong point as to why I want my boiler fixed as soon as possible. I’ve made this quite a surface example just show how this attitude of DBT works. But I have found this helpful! Just taking a second to check myself and think what mind frame am I in and am I in the right one for what I’m trying to achieve. Even if I’m not trying to achieve anything and I’m reacting to something. Checking where my mind is at is also helpful. Please let me know if my fellow Ninjas find this helpful too!

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