What is Psychosis?

Psychosis is often defined as a set of symptoms that can involve:

  • Delusional beliefs
  • Hallucinations that are often auditory in nature
  • Disorganized thinking and behaviour, and
  • Negative symptoms, which include a lack of enjoyment in activities, decreased social interaction, and decreased motivation.

These symptoms can often cause significant distress, and can make it difficult to perform day-to-day tasks.

Understanding Delusional Beliefs

Often, we may have beliefs that others don’t share or may not understand. Delusional beliefs tend to be more implausible to others given the current socio-cultural context.

But, one question we should all ask ourselves is whether we have had a belief that we don’t have anymore? Perhaps you think of times where you believed that there were monsters under the bed, or perhaps you believed that a friend was angry with you when they weren’t.

Addressing Delusional Beliefs

The important principle of CBT is that beliefs can be tested, using an evidence-based approach and Socratic questioning. It’s important to remember that arguing with someone against their beliefs often leads to more rigid beliefs. Instead, it’s important to understand where the belief is coming from, and what it means to the individual. To challenge a belief, we want to examine both the evidence that might support the belief, and the evidence that does not, and try to draw conclusions based on the evidence.

It can be difficult to talk to others about these beliefs as people often dismiss them, or don’t believe them. In such cases, a psychologist may be helpful to help you understand these thoughts, and examine the evidence in a collaborative manner.

The content of this blog is for informational purposes only, and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical or psychological advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your mental health provider or physician with any questions that you have regarding mental health concerns. If you think you have an emergency, please call 911 or visit your nearest emergency room.