COGNITIVE BEHAVIORAL THERAPY (CBT)
Thrive Psychology Group - Los Angeles
Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is one of the best validated forms of therapy, and one of the core methods used at Thrive Psychology Group. CBT helps you become aware of inaccurate or negative thinking so you can view challenging situations more clearly and respond to them in a more effectively. CBT can be a very helpful tool in treating mental health in instances of depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or eating disorders. It can also be an effective tool to help anyone to better manage stressful life situations.
WHAT IS CBT USED FOR?
CBT is used to treat a wide range of issues. It's often the preferred type of psychotherapy because it can quickly help you identify and cope with specific challenges.
CBT is a useful tool to address multiple emotional challenges and may help to:
Learn techniques for coping with stressful life situations
Identify ways to manage emotions
Resolve relationship conflicts and learn better ways to communicate
Cope with grief or loss
Overcome emotional trauma related to abuse or violence
Manage chronic physical symptoms
Mental health conditions that may improve with CBT include:
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
Substance use disorders
WHAT HAPPENS DURING CBT?
Your Thrive therapist will encourage you to talk about your thoughts and feelings and what's troubling you. Don't worry if you find it hard to open up about your feelings. Your therapist can help you gain more confidence and comfort.
CBT generally focuses on specific problems, using a goal-oriented approach. As you go through the therapy process, your therapist may ask you to do "homework" — activities, reading or practices that build on what you learn during your regular therapy sessions — and encourage you to apply what you're learning in your daily life.
Your therapist's approach will depend on your particular situation and preferences. Your therapist may combine CBT with another therapeutic approach.
STEPS IN CBT
Identify troubling situations or conditions in your life. These may include such issues as a medical condition, divorce, grief, anger or symptoms of a mental illness. You and your therapist may spend some time deciding what problems and goals you want to focus on.
Become aware of your thoughts, emotions and beliefs about these problems.Once you've identified the problems to work on, your therapist will encourage you to share your thoughts about them. This may include observing what you tell yourself about an experience (self-talk), your interpretation of the meaning of a situation, and your beliefs about yourself, other people and events. Your therapist may suggest that you keep a journal of your thoughts.
Identify negative or inaccurate thinking. To help you recognize patterns of thinking and behavior that may be contributing to your problem, your therapist may ask you to pay attention to your physical, emotional and behavioral responses in different situations.
Reshape negative or inaccurate thinking. Your therapist will likely encourage you to ask yourself whether your view of a situation is based on fact or on an inaccurate perception of what's going on. This step can be difficult. You may have long-standing ways of thinking about your life and yourself. With practice, helpful thinking and behavior patterns will become a habit and won't take as much effort.
Cognitive behavioral therapy may not cure your condition or make an unpleasant situation go away. But it can give you the power to cope with your situation in a healthy way and to feel better about yourself and your life.