DBT Concept: Wise Mind

DBT Wise Mind

Wise Mind is a core concept of Dialectical Behavior Therapy and can be very useful in helping people make effective decisions! There are three ways that people might interpret or respond to a situation: Wise Mind, Reasonable Mind, and Emotion Mind. Wise Mind is the synergy between two related concepts: Reasonable Mind and Emotional Mind.

Reasonable Mind refers to a mindset characterized by reason and logic. The focus is on objective facts and problem solving. Reasonable Mind requires some effort to maintain, which becomes more difficult when stressed, tired, or overwhelmed. Famous examples of characters that only use Reasonable Mind include Star Trek characters Spock and Data.

Emotion Mind refers to a mindset characterized by intense emotions and passion. Reactions may be more automatic, driven by your feelings. This can be problematic as it can lead to impulsive, chaotic responses.

Wise Mind is the integration of Reasonable Mind and Emotional Mind; of reason and emotion. In Wise Mind, you are able to apply your intellectual problem solving skills to your pain and distress in order to reduce your suffering. When you make decisions from Wise Mind, you are more likely to reach your goals.

Jenell Effinger