Thought (CTFAR) Model – the idea that circumstances (facts) trigger thoughts, which cause feelings, which lead to actions and results. Now it’s time to apply what you’ve learned to a real-world situation.
For this assignment, you are to do the following to demonstrate your understanding of the Thought model and are able to apply it to a situation that you are currently experiencing. Please follow the instructions below.
1. In 2-3 paragraphs (aim for around 100-200 words), describe a challenging situation that you are currently experiencing with an employee, colleague, or manager. Describe what is happening from your point of view. Please respect individuals’ privacy and DO NOT use real names of people or companies; either make them up or try to describe the situation without referring to people and companies by name.
2. Once you feel you have given sufficient detail so that someone understands the challenge or problem, your next task is to look at the situation objectively (i.e not from your own point of view) and describe the situation according to the Thought (CTFAR) model with rationale. Make sure to clearly identify the thought model element in each section.
What is the circumstance (a provable fact, not our opinion or exaggeration of the facts) of the situation? For example (not including rationale): “Circumstance: My employee has been late 7 of the past 14 days.”
What thought (a sentence in your mind) do you have regarding this situation? For example (not including rationale): “Thought: They don’t respect me or the company.”
- When you think this thought, how do you feel (a one-word emotion, not a sentence)? (ex: happy, sad, mad, glad, etc.) For example (not including rationale): “Feeling: Resentful”
What action (the behavior you exhibit) do you take when you feel this way? For example (not including rationale): “Action: I ignored them and was short in conversations with them.”
- And finally, what result (the result YOU get for YOUR actions) do you get when you act this way? For example (not including rationale): “Result: I am being disrespectful of my employee.”
3. To change your results, follow the Thought model backwards. In a few sentences, write out a plan to improve the situation you’ve described above.
- What result would you like for yourself (note that this is YOUR result, not your employee’s, colleague’s, or manager’s result). For example, a result for you may be, “I will address the employee’s tardiness and document the conversation.”
What action do you need to take to get the result?
- What do you need to be feeling in order to take that action?
What do you need to think in order to feel this way?
- Then, put your plan into action. Once you’ve thought of your action(s) to improve the situation, put it into effect. Have the conversation, make the change, whatever your action plan is, go do it, and take notes on the results so that you can use them to draft your reflection below.
4. Lastly, it’s time to reflect. In the last part of your submission, describe what happened and how you applied the Thought Model process. Consider the following questions when drafting your response (likely a few paragraphs, around 300-500 words):
How did recognizing your thought about the current circumstance help you see how you are participating in your results?
How did thinking through the Thought model influence the action plan you came up with? How did getting clearer about the circumstances, thoughts, and feelings influence the action you took and the results you achieved?
- Did your action plan work the way you expected?
- What were the actual results and did they differ from what you predicted?
- Is the situation resolved to your (and/or your supervisor/colleague/manager’s) satisfaction?
- What would you do differently if you had the opportunity to address the situation a second time?
What was most difficult for you to practice or apply?
What did you learn using this model?
What steps are you planning to take next? Why?