Wellness is a choice!  Every day we make choices whether on a conscious level or not that impact our wellness. Cognitions of Choice offers a system of learning that empowers the individual to create new options for wellness. Dr. Steffen utilizes New Choice Thinking and Cognitions of Choice to empower clients to choose wellness.  Coaches in training are taught this system of learning to expand their coaching programs and inspire clients toward a wellness lifestyle.

Cognitions of Choice

Cognitions of Choice is a compliment to Habits of Mind.*  It offers a network of neural programming that engages self-dialog between automatic thinking, critical thinking, mindfulness, and integrated life choices.  It evokes an active process of resiliency and hopefulness for living in the present with a healthy respect for future orientation and a transcendent wellness perspective.


Cognitions of Choice are used to neutralize negative self-defeating cognitions that interfere with self-harmony and creating balanced life choices.  These cognitions not only offer patterns of thinking that may be deeply programmed or engrained at the level of core identity, but also offer intuitive guideposts for making healthy life choices.  If they are not already present within the parameters of thought, with practice they can be taught at varying levels of cognition and become a part of the integrated life filter or functional force as a means of offering psychological immunity.

Cognitions: Are not just the thoughts we hold, but incorporate the actions we take based upon these patterns of thinking.  Cognitions connect to our values and personality traits that create our neural hotwiring or programming that construct our social perceptions and life choices.  Our cognitions guide our habits of being and life philosophy.

  • Unconscious (automatic thought)
  • Meta (Thoughts about thinking)
  • Conscious or Mindfulness
  • Integrated or Authentic Perception

Harmonious Balance: Life is constantly changing and creating obstacles, challenges, or directional changes that we may or may not be prepared to face.  It is essential to focus on establishing a core center that stems from our functional force that allows us zone awareness and holistic immunity from imbalance or trauma.




Effortless/Authentic Resonance or Oneness

Golden Rule: Is a simple reminder of the importance of life protection and reciprocal respect.  It is a relational rule that reinforces Integrated Cognition or Harmonious life balance.

Don’t Hurt Yourself

Don’t Let Anyone Hurt You

Don’t Hurt Anyone Else

Cognitions of Choice~ Philosophy for Living

Cognition Image Motto Aspirational Guidepost          Disposition

I present

Consider Options Motto:

There are always choices!

Slow down and review, while exploring possibilities
Create Alternatives Motto:

Let’s see another way I can look at this!

You can always create a plan B, and think ahead, and even in life situations where you can’t you still have choices
Discernment Motto: I can discriminate between healthy and unhealthy choices Remain true to your values and respect personal boundaries for yourself and others
Altruism Motto:

I am giving back because I am grateful!

It is not about seeing others as less fortunate; it involves understanding loss and trauma can happen to anyone
Positive Mental Attitude Motto:

Things have a way of working out!

Life is an exceptional gift to be appreciated at all levels of functioning
Cultural Appreciation Motto: Aesthetics are present in all aspects of life Appreciate the differences because that is where real natural beauty exists
Open Communication Motto:

I want to connect to you!

Listening occurs only when we are present and receptive, without this no intimacy occurs
Commitment Motto:

I am here for the long haul!

Being connected allows us to prevent isolation and anxiety, and is an opportunity to validate one another
Congruency &


Motto: Things need to fit to maintain wellness Complimentary views or perspectives can exist within us and between others, it creates harmony
Transcendence Motto:

I can see the future!

We need to live in the present while being mindful of the future; without this we can become vulnerable to discouragement or despair
Future Orientation Motto: I am hopeful! Passing the baton allows the rely to occur between generations and creates continuity in life
Seeking Solutions Motto: I Investigate life with an open mind and heart Investigation with an open mind and heart goes beyond simple problem solving, it involves relational joining
Respect for Equality Motto: We all do the best we can and have something to offer We don’t all have the same abilities or gifts but on a human level we all matter and contribute to life
Integrity Motto: I will do the best I am able and respect all living creatures ~

I give you my word!

Being authentic and representing what you communicate to others with consistency offers a solid foundation
Sharing Motto:

I have more than enough!

One of the greatest joys is giving to others willingly and not expecting anything in return
Reciprocal Joy Motto:

We matter to each other!

Learning to appreciate another beyond our flaws is a reason to celebrate
Protective Bond Motto: I am there for you with love, acceptance, and forgiveness I will nurture you and release when you communicate you are ready to go forward
Courageous Acts Motto:

I will take a reasonable risk!

We all have limitations because moving forward and being able to ask for help when needed allows us to live a successful life
Harmonious Balance Motto: I live life in balance Life will through us curve balls and we can feel off balance, but protecting our core allows us holistic wellness
Whimsical Spontaneity Motto: Life is fun~

Let’s see what happens

We need to learn to laugh at ourselves, and enjoy others who grow from doing the same
Fearless Conviction Motto:

I am ready!

Fearlessness is being committed to trying and being in a state of readiness to learn
Charisma Motto: My authentic self is the best version of me! Accepting ourselves, forgiving our limitations, and loving ourselves provides us with a magnet that will draw others who focus on living in wellness toward us
Self-encouragement Motto:

I got this!

The world doesn’t always offer ready-made encouragement or self-empowerment, we have to learn how to find it to progress and stay well
Self-Respect Motto:

It is my time!

For everything there is a season and understanding that we are worthy and deserving allows us to live authentically

*Costa, A. www.Instituteforhabitsofmind.com