Examples for Borderline Skills and how to use them

In borderline therapy patients are given the opportunity to learn a number of skills that are designed to deal with negative belief systems and emotions. Therapy teaches clients borderline coping skills allowing them to manage their disorder effectively and finally embrace life in a positive way. Part of borderline skills therapy is conveying positive affirmations but also highlighting possible solutions, once particular life skills have been absorbed.

There are many borderline skills patients one can learn with the help of borderline coping skills therapy:-

  • Learning to respect them selves
  • Learning that it is perfectly acceptable to occasionally say “No”
  • Learning how to ask for something
  • Learning how to fulfil aspirations in a sensible way
  • Learning how to hold on to a cheerful mood even during dark days
  • Learning how to negotiate
  • Learning not to judge
  • Learning how to do away with false basic assumptions
  • Learning not to put the Self down all the time
  • Learning how to understand the individual’s rights as well as those of others and how to respect them
  • Learning how to describe emotions

Describing emotions can be very difficult, especially when people were raised not to show emotions or when they are still unclear of their actual feelings. Borderline patients can derive great comfort from simple but evocative pictures that are used in therapy to prompt an emotional response.

Borderline therapy patients often take such pictures as a starting point to sift through their conflicting emotions – until they arrive at what is real and must be dealt with before they can finally move forward.

Acceptance of responsibility for mistakes is as much part of borderline skills training as is learning how to avoid stressful situations. Borderline skills training can also be used to keep anger in check – a typical aspect of borderline disorders. With the help of specific coping mechanisms borderline personality disorder patients can learn not to be ruled by their emotions; instead, they are taught how to manipulate them into a positive direction.

As part of their treatment therapy borderline personality disorder patients learn how to create positive experiences, perhaps by painting a picture they’ve long felt they wanted to draw or by doing something else that has been on their mind for a long time. Taking action and therefore life into their own hands helps boost clients’ confidence as well as create a positive experience to guide them in the future.

On difficult days borderline skills enable clients to deal with their dark, negative thoughts and conflicting emotions by finding positive distractions. They might visit the theatre or re-watch a favourite film at the cinema, draw a picture or plant a new shrub in their garden – borderline skills therapy empowers people to deal with difficult days in a constructive way, turning negative experiences into positive ones.

Borderline patients often have low self-esteem, are irritable, impulsive and they quickly switch their opinions of people – borderline personality disorder skills training helps patients to become independent, rely on their inner resources and sustain healthy relationships with others.

Cards for Life can be a useful tool in borderline skills training. Their cheerful pictures and positive affirmations encourage discussion by breaking the ice in an interesting way.

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