Thinking Error: ENERGY

When it comes to what I want, I am extremely energetic. My high level of mental activity is directed to a flow of ideas as to what would make life more interesting and exciting.

Thinking Error: FEAR

Fears in me are widespread, persistent, and intense; especially fears of being caught for something; fear of injury or death, and fear of a put-down.

Thinking Error: ZERO STATE

This is the periodic experience of myself as being nothing. “A zero”; a feeling of absolute worthlessness, hopelessness, and futility.

Thinking Error: ANGER

Anger is a basic part of my way of life. I respond angrily to anything I interpret as opposing what I want for myself. Anger is, for me, a major way of controlling people and situations.

Thinking Error: PRIDE

Criminal pride is an extremely high evaluation of myself. It is the idea that I am better than others. Even when this is clearly not the case. Criminal pride preserves my rigid self-image as a powerful, totally self-determining person.

Thinking Error: POWER TRUST

I feel like I need control and power over others. My greatest power excitement is in doing the forbidden and getting away with it. My need for power, control, and dominance show in all areas of my life. The occasions when I appear to show an interest in a responsible activity are generally opportunities for me to exercise power and control.


I am often excessively sentimental; about my mother, old people, invalids, animals, babies, my love attachments, plans for the future, etc.

Thinking Error: RELIGION

I use religion to support my way of thinking and my criminality. My religious ideas are usually very literal and concrete. Religion ( like Sentimentality) does not consistently deter my criminal thinking or actions but does support my self-image as a good and decent person.

Thinking Error: CONTRETE

I tend to think in terms of particular objects and events, rather than general and abstract concepts. This is also called Either/or Thinking: I choose not to consider all the possibilities in a situation, so that I can avoid accepting responsibility for my actions.


I may feel sentimental love for my children, and steal their money to buy drugs. My personality is a collection of distinct isolated, and contradictory fragments.

This is a very basic feature of my criminal personality. It refers to radical fluctuations in my mental state that occur within relatively short periods of time. There is a pattern of starting something, and then changing my mind. I will make commitments with sincerity and great feeling, and break

Thinking Error: UNIQUENESS

I emphasize my total difference from other people. I feel myself to be special, “one of a kind”. I allow myself not to be responsible by believing that I am someone special and that the rules and expectations don’t apply to me.


I have extreme standards of perfection, although I apply these standards sporadically and inconsistently.


I am : (1) very suggestible with respect to any behavior that leads to what I want, (2) very resistant to suggestion towards responsible thinking and behavior.

Thinking Error: LONER

I lead a private, secretive life; one against the world (including fellow criminals). I feel myself to be apart from others, even if outwardly I am active and gregarious.

Thinking Error: SEXUALITY

I have plenty of sexual experiences but little in the say of sensual gratification or competence in performance. Conquest is essential and a partner is regarded as a possession.

Thinking Error: LYING

For me, lying is a way of life. Lying is incorporated into my basic make up and feeds other criminal patterns. More common than premeditated lying is habitual lying which becomes automatic. I define reality with my lies, and so maintain control.

Thinking Error: DENIAL

I choose to avoid responsibility by lying to myself or others about thinking, behaviors or other facts in a situation. This is a defense mechanism which I use to protect myself from painful aspects of myself, others, and/or reality. Minor irritations turn into major problems. I feel powerful because I get over. I can lie to others as well as to myself with regard to who I really am.


I make excuses and rationalizations for my behavior. In this way I do not have to take responsibility for my behavior and actions. I can maintain a virtuous image of myself because all of my behavior and actions are justified.

Thinking Error: MINIMIZING

I choose to avoid responsibility by making my behavior and/or thinking seem smaller than it really is.

Thinking Error: CLOSED CHANNEL

In treatment, an open channel of communication requires disclosure, receptivity, and self-criticism. Instead, the unchanged criminal is secretive, has a closed mind and is self-righteous. If therapy for me is to be effective, an open channel between me and my therapist must be established.

Thinking Error: “I CAN’T”

I say “I can’t” to express my refusal to act responsibly. At the same time I believe there is nothing I can’t do that I want to do. I say “I can’t”. What I am really saying is I won’t to escape accountability for what I do.

Thinking Error: VICTIM STANCE

When I am held accountable for my irresponsible actions, I blame others and portray myself as a victim. The world does not give me what I think I am entitled to, so I view myself as poorly treated and thus a victim. I choose to claim someone or something else is really responsible for my actions and thinking.

Thinking Error: LACK OF TIME

Even more than wanting what I want when I want it, I demand immediate possession and success. I must be the best, have the best, right now. I have no enduring concept of the length of a life, or of a lifetime. This is another aspect of my concrete thinking.

Thinking Error: LACK OF EMPATHY

I demand every consideration and every break for myself, but rarely stop to think about what other people think, feel, and expect.


My life involves extensive injury to those around me. However, I do not view myself as injuring others. When held accountable, I regard myself as the injured party.


The concept of obligation is foreign to my thinking. Obligations interfere with what I want to do. Obligation is viewed as a position of weakness and vulnerability to others’ control. Obligations are irritating to me, and if pressed, I will respond with resentment and anger.

Thinking Error: NO INITIATIVE

I decline to take responsible initiatives because; (1) responsible initiatives fail to provide the excitement and power thrust of forbidden activities, (2) they do not provide a guarantee of success and triumph, and (3) I am often afraid that accepting the responsible tasks will expose my lack of knowledge and ineptness.

Thinking Error: OWNERSHIP

When I want something that belongs to someone else, it is as good as mine. “Belonging” is established in my mind, in the sense that I feel perfectly justified in getting my way. I consider myself a decent person with the right to do whatever suits my purposes and I view the world as my oyster. I view people as pawns or checkers, waiting to be dealt with as I wish. This thinking is habitual and without malice.

Thinking Error: FEAR OF FEAR

I am fearful of fear and contemptuous of fear. When I discern it in others, I point it out, scorn it and exploit it. When fear occurs in me, it is a put-down, destroying my self-esteem. This applies also to the many states that denote degrees of fear: doubt, concern, apprehension, anxiety. I deny these in myself. When they occur in others, I am ready to pounce.

Thinking Error: LACK OF TRUST

Although I do not trust others, I demand that others trust me. There are times when my trust of others is sincere, but this is only one of many fragments of my personality. It does not last.

Thinking Error: INDEPENDENT

Like anyone else, I am dependent on other people for some things in life. However, I do not see myself this way. I fail to believe that a degree of interdependence is a necessary part of existence. To me, dependence is a weakness; it would render me vulnerable.


I am not interested in responsible tasks that don’t offer immediate excitement. I find responsibility boring. When I do become interested in a responsible project, my interest is short-lived, unless I feel the excitement of being a conspicuous success.

Thinking Error: POOR DECISIONS

In an important personal decision there is no sound reasoning, fact finding, consideration of costs or options. I am reluctant to ask questions about non-criminal activities because I view it as a put-down to reveal my ignorance. If my pretensions and expectations are controverted by the facts, I do not what to hear them.


Effort refers to doing things that are contrary to what I prefer to do. I refuse to endure the adversity of responsible living. The man adversity to me is failure to control, failure to be a big shot. Adversity is anything that is not going my way. I escape from this adversity into criminal thought and action, which is exciting.


I do little to achieve, but carry tremendously inflated ideas about my capacity. I am or will be the best (never that I will do my best). I am right and others are wrong. When I know something is right and someone tells me it’s wrong, I usually get mad. If I hear somebody say anything wrong, I usually try to set them right. When confined, I regard myself as more knowledgeable than that staff and seize every opportunity to teach others


I may be deterred from criminal activity by a sense of conscience, a sincere wish to change, and by sentimental, religious or humanitarian feelings as well as by the fear of getting caught. I overcome these deterrents to my criminality by the processes of corrosion and cutoff.

  • Corrosion is a mental process in which deterrents are slowly eliminated until the desire to commit a criminal act outweighs the deterrent factors. This is criminal scheming. In this process of my sentiments and ideals and fears gradually give way to the desire for criminal activity.
  • Cutoff is the mental process that eliminates deterrents from consideration completely and instantaneously. The gradual process of corrosion is completed by the final cutoff of fear and toher deterrents to crime. Cutoff is a mental process that produces fragmentation. I move instantaneously form one mental state to another, radically different states.

Thinking Error: GOOD PERSON

I believe that I am a good and decent person. I reject the thought that I am a criminal. Performing kind or sentimental acts towards others enhances my view of myself as good. The image of myself as a good person gives me, in turn, a license for more crime and postpones the recurrence of the zero state.

Thinking Error: DEFERMENT

I defer or puts things off in three distinct areas. (1) I carry with me the idea of an ultimate crime, the big score but defer acting on it. (2) I have the idea that one day I will quit crime, go straight and settle down, but that day is constantly deferred. (3) I have a habit of deferring the minor routine responsibilities of life; paying a bill, writing a letter, filing a tax return.


My mind works in such a way that a possibility or an assumption is an accomplished fact; an idea is a reality. If someone tells me “maybe” I regard it as a promise. Anything that I decide to do is as good as done. I use cutoff to eliminate fear and doubt. The result is that as I approach a criminal activity, I reach a state of absolute confidence. Super-optimistic, there is not a doubt in my mind. Similarly, if I do decide to become a responsible persons, I am super-optimistic of my success. Once I decide, I will believe that the change has occureed.

Thinking Error: MIND READING

Without their saying so, I know what people are feeling and why they act the way they do. In particular, I am able to define how people are feeling towards me. When I assume something, I am taking it for granted that it is true without really basing my decision on facts.


I expect disaster. I notice or hear about a problem and start “what if’s”. What if tragedy strikes? What if it happens to me?


Thinking every thing people do or say is some kind of reaction to me. I also compare myself to others trying to determine who’s smarter, better looking, etc.

Thinking Error: SHOULDS

I have a list of ironclad rules about how I and other people should act. People who break the rules anger me and I feel guilty if I violate the rules.


I believe that what I feel must be true automatically. If I feel stupid and boring, then I must be stupid and boring.


I expect that other people will change to suit me if I just pressure or cajol them enough. I need to change people because of my hopes for happiness seems to depend entirely on them.


I generalize one or two qualities into a negative global judgment.

Thinking Error: BEING RIGHT

I am continually on trial to prove that my opinions and actions are correct. Being wrong is unthinkable and I will go to any length to demonstrate my rightness.

Thinking Error: HEAVEN’S REWARD

I expect all my sacrifice and self-denial to pay off, as if there were someone keeping score. I feel bitter when the reward doesn’t come.

Thinking Error: PLAYING THE GAME

Presenting myself like I am really trying to deal with a problem or making changes, when I am really just talking.

Thinking Error: RESENTMENT

I hold on to real or imagined pain that others have caused me. Similarly, I hold on to past insults and injuries. My pain turns to anger and rage. The more resentments I collect, the more I am justified in acting out. I collect resentments like trading stamps. Once I have collected enough, I can trade them in for a blow-up, a tantrum, a drunk, a binge, or an attack on another person. Resentments reinforce the victim stance.


This is to endlessly put off coing things until later. Procrastination allows me to obsess about what might happen if I took various courses of actions without ever having to take a risk or put any effort into goal attainment


I never have to make choices. I never have to take risks that I am afraid to take.



·        Arguments never settle things, but prayer changes things.

·        Nothing makes us love our enemies as much as praying for them.

·        A small boy asked his parents, "I'm going to pray now—do you need anything?"

·        An important part of praying is a willingness to be a part of the answer.

·        If we pray in times of victory, we will not need to plead in times of defeat.

·        Many prayers end up in the dead-letter office because they lack sufficient direction.

·        The best way to influence people for God is to intercede with God for people.

·        When it seems hardest to pray, we should pray the hardest.

·        You can turn any care into prayer anywhere.

·        Too much of prayer is asking instead of thanking.

·        Bending our knees in prayer keeps us from breaking under the load of care.

·        Prayer is not a way of getting what we want, but the way to become what God wants us to be.

·        Spiritual growth soars up when we have prayed up, made up, and said up.

·        Prayerless pews make powerless pulpits.

·        Prayer is the breath of the soul; without it you will turn blue.

·        Prayer is like a computer—you can only get out of it what you put into it.

·        Prayer is measured by its depth, not its length.

"Lord, Teach Us to Pray"

Jesus' disciples came to him, and said,"Lord, teach us to pray"(Luke 11:1). It is not recorded that Jesus taught them how to preach. I have often said that I would rather know how to pray like Daniel than to preach like Gabriel.

If you get love into your soul, so the grace of God may come down in answer to prayer, there will be no trouble about reaching the people. It is not by eloquent sermons that perishing souls are going to be reached. We need the power of God in order that the blessing may come down.

The Resurgence of Prayer

A remarkableNewsweekarticle entitled "Talking to God "claimed that 78 percent of Americans pray at least once a week, and 57 percent report praying every day or even more often. Ninety-one percent of women and 85 percent of men pray at some time. This includes 94 percent of blacks and 87 percent of whites.

"Some of these prayers,"Newsweekcontinued, "are born in extremities: there are few atheists in cancer wards or unemployment lines. But in allegedly rootless, materialistic, self-centered America, there is also a hunger for a personal experience with God that prayer seeks to satisfy."

The authors concluded, "Even in the University, the temple of all that the Enlightenment has distilled, prayer has found a home. "It was very rare 20 years ago to find vital, vibrant religion on the college campus," says David Rosenhan, professor of law and psychology at Stanford University. "Now there are prayer meetings here that are attended by 300 to 500 students regularly."

Focus on the Family


Manywho believe on the name of Jesus are not sure that they have eternal life; they only hope so. Occasionally they have assurance, but the joy is not abiding. They are like a minister I have heard of, who said he felt assured of his salvation "except when the wind was in the east." It is a wretched thing to be so subject to circumstances as many are. What is true when the wind is in the soft south or the reviving west, is equally true when the wind is neither good for man nor beast. Jesus would not have our assurance vary with the weather glass, nor turn with the vane.

·        A bushelful of resolutions is of small value; a single grain of practice is worth the whole.

·        A cake made of memories will do for a bite now and then, but it makes poor daily bread.

·        A change of life alone can prove a change of heart.

·        A Christian's life should be the Decalogue written large.

·        Additions and subtractions are weeds which it is hard to keep out of the garden of conversation.

·        Adversity has less power to harm than prosperity.

·        A faithful look at Jesus breaks the heart both for sin and from sin.

·        A faith that never wept is a faith that never lived.

·        A frequent hearer is likely to become a fervent believer.

·        A gash in the conscience may disfigure a soul forever.

·        A gospel that does not suit everybody does not suit anybody.

·        A groundless hope is a mere delusion.

·        A little food cooked is better for dinner than a great joint raw.

·        A living argument is invincible.

·        All true hearts are not fit for fight.

·        A man may have another heart and yet he may not have a new heart.

·        Amid a torrent of sin and sorrow, you may cross the stream of time upon the stepping stones of the places marked,"Jehovah-Shammah."

·        Angels have a special liking for sleeping saints.

·        An ounce of faith is better than a ton of learning. A pilgrim's life is not all feasting.

·        Apologies for disobedience are mere refuges of lies.

·        A praiseful heart is a soul-winning heart. A quiet conscience is a little heaven.

·        A rock which is in nobody's way, may stand where it is.

·        A saint shines on men when God has shone on him.

·        As earth goes, Christ comes.

·        A small musket ball, in full career, will do more execution than a great cannon-ball which lies still.

·        A smile from Jesus in the morning will be sunshine all the day.

·        A smith can shoe a horse, though he has never studied astronomy.

·        A vision of God is the quietus of boasting.

·        A week without a Sabbath is perpetual bondage.

·        A wordless prayer is not silent to God.

·        A working Christ makes a raging devil.