DBT Series 18 - FAST

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We are working our way through the Interpersonal Effectiveness skills and are learning how to effectively interact with others. The second Interpersonal Effectiveness skill we will learn about is FAST.

FAST is called the Self-Respect Effectiveness skill. While the GIVE skill can be used when interacting with others, the FAST skill is used for yourself. The FAST skill encourages us to remember our own beliefs and values so we don’t betray ourselves.

FAST is an acronym that stands for:

  • (Be) Fair
  • Apologies
  • Stick to Values
  • Truthful

(Be) Fair. This part of the skill encourages us to be fair to ourselves and to keep in mind to be fair with others. If you wouldn't expect another person to overextend themselves, why would you place that expectation to overextend on yourself? Be fair and be kind to yourself.

Apologies. While it’s important to apologize when it’s warranted or when you hurt someone, to help maintain your self-respect, offer an apology when it’s appropriate to do so. You do not need to offer an apology for having emotions, differing opinions, or disagreeing with someone.

Stick to Values. Values are the things that are important to us and help us make decisions throughout our lives. It’s important to remember these values and to not compromise on them in order to get what you want or to be liked by others. Examples of values may include respect, independence, loyalty, and fostering positive relationships with others.

Truthful. Be truthful to yourself and to others. This can look like not over-exaggerating or acting helpless when you are not. This also refers to avoiding lying.

Want to hear more about the DBT FAST skill? Check out this free video from DBT-RU to hear more! (1)


(1) [@DBTRU]. (2020, December 8). FAST  [Video]. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gmjd-9PmCi4&t=22s

Reminder: these blog posts are meant to be purely educational and/or entertainment tools and do NOT replace psychotherapy and/or other medically necessary treatments.

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