COGNITIVE BEHAVIOURAL THERAPY (CBT)
"Men are disturbed not by things, but by the view which they take of things"
~ Epictetus, a Greek Stoic philosopher (55AD-135AD)
WHAT IS CBT?
Pioneered in the 1960s by Aaron T. Beck as a way of understanding and treating depression, CBT is a short-term, goal-oriented, and problem-focused psychological intervention that explores how your thoughts and behaviours relate to and influence the way you feel, and how these elements might contribute to your problems. It's not necessarily what happens to us, but rather it's how we interpret situations that can create emotional pain and suffering. Therefore, if we change the way we think and how we behave we can change the way we feel, and we can create new possibilities for our future.
CBT is grounded in psychological theories of learning. These propose that many behaviours are learned and therefore can be changed by breaking associations and consequences. Patterns of thinking and ways of behaving are likely to have been effective at some point. However, problems tend to occur when these thought patterns aren't regularly 'updated' to fit with life as it is now, ultimately becoming completely detrimental and getting in the way of us living a productive life.
There is an extensive evidence-base demonstrating the effectiveness of CBT as a highly effective talking therapy for several conditions and is recommended by NICE in the treatment of mental health problems, including:
Psychosis & Schizophrenia
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
Social Anxiety Disorder
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) & Body Dysmorphic Disorder (BDD)
Generalised Anxiety Disorder & Panic Disorder
HOW CBT COULD HELP YOU
CBT can help you to develop a greater awareness of the link between the way you think and how you feel, and how these are influenced by the experiences that you have had throughout the course of your life. We will use our time together in our sessions to discover these links, and how these are associated with a deeper belief system (core beliefs). Further to understanding these patterns, traditional CBT aims to explore ways of breaking these cycles, by changing unhelpful thinking patterns and dysfunctional coping strategies and teach you the therapeutic skills to help you to develop a more realistic and balanced way of thinking. Therefore, by changing the way you think and behave, you can change how you feel.
We will discuss and practice a range of CBT strategies to build a 'tool kit' to use after therapy has ended to prevent unhelpful patterns of behaviour from re-emerging.
CBT may be the appropriate treatment for you if you:
are looking for a practical problem-solving approach to overcome an identified problem
can identify a target or goal to achieve
are motivated to put in the time and effort required to work on your problem