In Stress and Coping

Image Manipulation & Imagery Re-Scripting

Sometimes we can get horribly distressing intrusive images that just pop into our heads, and we have trouble getting rid of them again. The image may be based on a real memory, or just some random terrible image. These images can trigger strong physical sensations, and intense emotions of fear, dread, anger or sadness.

We can learn to manipulate or change the image so that we reduce the distressing feelings:

  • Imagine putting the image on a TV screen, now with an imaginary remote control, make the image smaller, making it more distant, perhaps turn it into black and white, remove the sound or give it a different soundtrack.
  • Imagine a plate or sheet of strong clear plastic and put it between your face and the image.  Push that image away from your face, until it gets smaller and is further away.
  • Change the imagery by coming up with a more positive or acceptable outcome – see it through to a successful completion.

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