As an addict involved in the LDS Addiction Recovery Program, I had to dig deep to find and embrace my inner Mormon. What follows is my journal from this point forward.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

10 Axioms of Choice Theory

I have been reading Dr. Glasser's book, Choice Theory, for on and off for sorme time now.  I have found it not only helpful and full of wonderful insight, I also find it very much in line with the principles of my faith.  I am reminded of passages in Second Nephi chapter 2, and Doctrine and Covenants sections 93 and 121. 

10 Axioms of Choice Theory

  1. The only person’s behavior I can control is my own.
  2. I am driven by five basic genetic needs: survival, love and belonging, power, freedom, and fun.
  3. I can satisfy these needs only by satisfying a picture of pictures in my quality world. Of all I know, what I choose to put in my quality world is most important.
  4. All I can do from birth to death is behave. All behavior is ‘total behavior’ and made up of four inseparable components: acting, thinking, feeling, and physiology.
  5. All total behavior is designated by verbs. For example, I am choosing to depress, or I am depressing; instead of I am suffering from depression, or I am depressed.
  6. All total behavior is chosen, but I have direct control only over my acting (doing) component and my thinking component. I can however, control my feelings and physiology by how I choose to think and act.
  7. All I can give or get from other people is information. How I deal with that information is my choice.
  8. Most long term psychological problems are relationship problems.
  9. The problem relationship is always part of my present life.
  10. What happened in the past that was painful has a great deal to do with who I am today, but revisiting this painful past can contribute little or nothing to what I need to do now.  I should strive to improve important, present relationships.


  1. Thank you very much for posting Dr. Glasser's axioms. I just want to mention a little known fact. In an article Dr. Glasser later wrote, he adjusted #8 to read "Most long term psychological problems are relationship problems."

    1. I have edited axiom #8 according to you comment. Thank you. I would like a reference to this article if you have it.