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  • Brianna Paruolo

A Therapist's Take on Lucky Girl Syndrome

Updated: May 22

The Lucky Girl Syndrome has taken the social media world by storm, with many TikToker's and Instagrammer's swearing that positive thoughts have brought them luck and success. At its core, Lucky Girl Syndrome promotes positive thinking and mantras like "I'm so lucky; everything works out for me."

The more I saw Lucky People in my feed, the more I became aware of the similarities between lucky thinking and cognitive behavioral therapy techniques such as reframing, journaling, tracking, and targeting automatic thoughts.

The idea behind cognitive behavioral therapy is that our thoughts can influence our feelings. There is an important distinction between thoughts and facts. Take a look at The Cognitive Triangle below, which illustrates the relationship between thoughts, emotions, and feelings. Thoughts can alter the way you feel and behave.

Cognitive Reframing is a CBT tool that helps one look at thoughts and core beliefs that might impact different areas of your life.

Reframing common core beliefs might look like this:

  • I'm not wanted --> I am valued

  • I'm never good enough --> I am more than enough

  • I don't deserve happiness --> I am worthy of happiness

Life experiences, relationships, and outside messaging shape our core beliefs - not our genes. All of us are capable of changing these beliefs to ones that serve us (hello, Lucky Girly Syndrome phenomenon).

Recording your thoughts can be a useful way to keep track of your thoughts throughout the day, as well as the emotions that might result from those thoughts. The following questions can help you sift through and challenge your thoughts:

  • What makes me believe that this thought is true?

  • What is the reason for my belief?

  • Is it possible that this thought might not be true after all?

  • How else can I look at this?

  • What would be the worst possible outcome?

  • Ideally, what would be the best outcome?

  • If this happened to a friend, what would I tell them?

Challenging thoughts with "What Ifs?"

By reframing automatic thoughts with "What If" questions, we open our minds to neutral and positive outcomes instead of just adverse outcomes. The next time self-doubt creeps in, try challenging the thought with:

  • What if it all works out?

  • What if it turns out exactly the way I want it to?

  • What if something better comes my way?

  • What if I succeed?

There are many positive outcomes to shifting your mindset through the use of tools. However, it's even more important to recognize what's under your control and what's not, when lucky thinking does not produce the results you'd hoped for.

Every trend has advantages and disadvantages, so it is important to always make sure that you consult with a mental health professional as well as explore healthy ways to implement new skills and enhance those that you already possess.

About the Author:

Brianna Paruolo is a provisionally licensed mental health therapist in New York. Through her work, she help New York City students, young professionals, and entrepreneurs thrive by gaining self-confidence, implementing healthier boundaries, and cultivating better relationships. In each session, you’ll find an actual human being invested in your human experience and supporting your success.

Legal Notice: The content presented in this blog post/Instagram post is for educational purposes only and is not intended to provide mental health treatment. It is crucial to consult with a qualified mental health professional for personalized advice or treatment regarding your specific circumstances. Reading or engaging with this content does not establish a client-counselor relationship, and the author is not liable for any actions taken based on the information provided. It is recommended to seek up-to-date information and consult professionals for the latest advancements in mental health research and practice. If you are experiencing a mental health crisis, please contact your local emergency services or helpline immediately.

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