CBT is based on the belief that most unhealthy ways of thinking and behaving have been learned over a long period of time. Using a set of structured techniques, a CBT therapist aims to identify how you are thinking and how this can cause problematic feelings and behaviour. You will then learn to change this way of thinking. This will help you react more positively, which will boost your self-esteem and confidence.
For example, negative thoughts usually lead to upsetting or angry feelings, which can then affect your mood and your behaviour. If you are unable to counter such thoughts with a more positive view, a negative spiral starts and your perceptions of a situation can become distorted. CBT encourages you to challenge beliefs about yourself and your abilities so that you achieve a more realistic view of the situation.
It helps you challenge your negative beliefs and to think about times when you have been successful or to consider what happens to other people in similar situations. Once you are thinking more realistically, you are encouraged to imagine how you would go about confronting a feared situation. You will then be gradually exposed to real life situations.
The aim of CBT is to provide you with a timescale for overcoming a problem and to give you the insight and skills to improve your quality of life. You will then be able to cope and progress on your own once therapy is finished.
CBT can help people who have:
…..And a wide range of issues that clients bring to therapy
The success of CBT depends on your active participation in the whole process, so there is an initial consultation, which enables you to decide whether you want to go ahead with the therapy. It also enables the therapist to talk to you and decide if this type of therapy will be useful.
At this session, you and your therapist will work together to identify patterns of thought and behaviour, which are causing you problems. You and your therapist will then plan a structured way forward with agreed practical objectives. This information helps plan future sessions, including the treatment aims and tasks. Further sessions involve discussing agreed topics in a practical way, focusing on the problems you are facing and how to solve them.