What is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?
Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a psychotherapy that assists individuals in improving their mental and emotional wellbeing. It works on the principle that thoughts, feelings and behavior are inextricably linked, so individuals can transform unhelpful thought patterns and behavioral patterns for lasting change.
CBT is often prescribed by healthcare providers for people suffering from psychological disorders or issues that have a mental component, such as chronic pain, anxiety, depression, insomnia, OCD trauma and PTSD. CBT can be conducted face-to-face or online and tailored to each patient’s individual needs.
When selecting a therapist for CBT, be sure to verify their credentials and experience. Look for someone who is licensed with specialized training in this type of therapy, as well as someone you feel comfortable and trusting of. If you are interested in trying out CBT, schedule some sessions beforehand to assess how it goes before making any commitments.
Over the years, various variations of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) have emerged. These include mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT), compassion focused therapy and schema therapy.
Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) combines the expertise of CBT with mindfulness meditation practices. It has proven to be one of the most successful forms of relapse prevention for those suffering from depression.
Metacognitive therapy (MCT) is a type of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) that focuses on how your beliefs influence your thoughts and behaviors. It has often been used to help clients transform negative thought patterns into more realistic ones.
Compassion focused therapy (CFT) is a type of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) designed to reduce feelings of shame and self-criticism by addressing the underlying causes of suffering rather than just treating symptoms. This approach draws from evolutionary understandings of the “tricky brain” combined with techniques from CBT and Buddhist psychology in order to reduce negative thinking and self-criticism’s harmful effects.
Schema therapy is an approach to cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) that focuses on how our past experiences and ingrained patterns of thought and behavior have affected us. It incorporates elements from attachment theory, object relations theory, and Gestalt therapy in order to help patients recognize and alter these habits of mind.
When considering CBT as a treatment method, it should be understood that it is only temporary and may not work for everyone. Furthermore, those with a history of self-harm or suicidal ideation should not try this approach.
Aaron Beck and Albert Ellis created cognitive therapy, which is still widely practiced today. Drawing upon theories developed by psychologist Albert Ellis – founder of rational emotive therapy – to alter irrational beliefs his clients held when faced with challenging events, these therapists created cognitive therapy with a modern spin.
Beck developed this form of therapy as a means to assist depressed patients in recognizing and challenging their automatic, negative thoughts, then reframing them in a more positive light. It has since been adapted and modified for use with other mental illnesses such as anxiety, personality disorder, and substance abuse.