How can I address others’ expectations and my perceptions to avoid becoming angry and frustrated?

Question: 

Tasks like filling out paperwork are difficult for me. Since my injury is invisible to most people, I often take it personally when I can't meet their expectations. How can I address their expectations and my perceptions to avoid becoming angry and frustrated?

Answer: 

Insecurities can play a large role in your frustration and anger. I would suggest focusing on yourself in order to change how you think and feel about those mistakes. What are your thoughts about the mistakes that you are making on the paperwork? Sometimes we get stuck thinking negative thoughts about ourselves that have no foundation or truth to them. This "stinking thinking" causes us to have self-doubt and to be overly sensitive and insecure. Challenge the way you think about these mistakes to change how you feel and your confidence. Also, use these emotions to strive for change and improvement. Work on getting better. Practice filling out paperwork on your own time. See what strategies work for you (e.g. use a ruler to keep your focus on one line at a time). Complete it in pencil first. Double-check your work. Not sure what paperwork you are completing, but is it possible to complete paperwork at home or in private in a quiet environment so you are not doing it in front of others? Ask for multiple copies of the paperwork. Maybe ask someone you know and trust to check your work before you hand in paperwork.    

 

This content is made possible by a partnership between the Indiana University School of Medicine and WETA/BrainLine. 

Posted on BrainLine November 13, 2019.