Sunday, July 5, 2015

Diary Cards

"One side of the diary card lists 23 key skills. Skill number 1 is Wise Mind. Two through six are the Core Mindfulness Skills. These skills underlie everything else that we do, and you will probably find yourselves working on them all through the program. Some of you may find that you have a pretty good handle on some of the skills already. In that case, you might just want to keep an eye on them, and see how they fit with newer skills. It is important to not start tracking the skills until you have an understanding of each skill. So you should start with Wise Mind, and just think about that first. 

Working on skills can take many forms. It can be setting yourself an exercise or task to do which uses the skill. It can mean talking about it with your therapist. It can mean noticing when you do or don't use it. If you are working on non-judgmentalness, you might observe a situation in which you are nonjudgmental, or one in which you are judgmental. You might think about a situation or a relationship, say with someone at work, where you are often quite judgmental, and you might decide to work on becoming less judgmental there. You might just think about situations where you are judgmental or not. There are many ways to practice.

Working on a skill does not necessarily mean that you will be successful. It simply means that you gave it some attention during the day. The point of doing the diary card is to keep reminding yourself of some of the important skills, and to track how you are doing with them. Don't judge yourself. Do it to help yourself. It is also a help in communicating quickly to your therapist what's going on with you and the skills. If you miss a day, don't worry. Just keep doing the best you can. Side Two The other side of the card allows you to observe urges and feelings. It is meant to last a week, so you can put the date in each of the boxes in the first column."

Here are examples of diary cards that you can print, download, and/or customize for yourself. Your DBT Therapist will help you with this.
Diary Card Explanation
Diary Card Sample 1
Diary Card Sample 2
Diary Card Sample 3
Diary Card Sample 4
Diary Card Sample 5
Pocket Diary Card
Flash Cards 
DBT Diary Cards
Here's a Diary Card that you use online and it will gather data.

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