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How You Can Attend to Your Core Emotional Needs

According to Schema Therapy, the core emotional needs are grouped across 5 areas. I mention the 5 areas below, with examples of some of the ways you can attend to them (extracted from the book: "Experiencing schema therapy from the inside out: A self-practice, self-reflection workbook for therapists").

(1) Connection:

  • Nurture your intimate connections (family, partner, and friends).

  • Express emotions, vent in safe places, and share private thoughts and concerns.

  • Maintain an ongoing compassionate inner dialogue with your own Vulnerable Child.

(2) Autonomy:

  • Nurture your core values in day-to-day actions.

  • Make choices that are self-aware. Find outlets to your own creativity.

  • Pursue your interests unrelated to work (e.g., hobbies, travel).

(3) Competence:

  • Take workshops that you find inspiring, keep up with reading in your professional field.

  • Focus on an area of speciality to deepen your knowledge.

  • Validate what you already know, give training, write books or articles.

(4) Healthy limits:

  • Be organized in your private and professional lives.

  • Set goals.

  • Follow through on to-do-lists.

  • Be aware of times your Impulsive/Undisciplined Child modes are triggered.

(5) Spontaneity, fun:

  • Set aside time for play with friends, your partner or children, pets.

  • Take time off to engage in the leisure activities that you enjoy.

  • Schedule such time if needed to ensure that it happens and be open for whatever play appeals to you.

  • Get friends together for game nights.

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