What is CBT – and what can it do for you?
CBT stands for Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.
It is not a new "fab" but there is research evidence that CBT can resolve a wide range of psychological and behavioural issues.
CBT can help to resolve problems but it can also help to prevent things in life from deteriorating – therefore CBT has found its way into life coaching.
WHAT CAN CBT HELP WITH?
- Low Mood
- Low Self Esteem
- Self sabotaging
- Anxiety Disorders:
- Social Anxiety
- Excessive Worries
- Panic Disorder
- Stress and Adjustment Problems:
- Major life changes (like job loss, becoming a new parent)
- Having to cope with a Chronic Physical Health Problem (e.g. Chronic Pain, Fatigue)
- Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
- Body Dysmorphic Disorder
- Bipolar Disorder
- Eating Disorders
- Anger Problems
CBT is based on the understanding that the way we feel is powerfully influenced by what we think. CBT aims to break through the circle of negative thinking resulting in low mood and helplessness. It enables people to think more objectively, feel more empowered and to develop new patterns of behaviour.
CBT is not about learning to “think positive” or to diminish the experience of real hardship. But to learn to deal with unhelpful or unrealistic thoughts and the resulting negative emotions and behaviour. It is about finding ways of learning to deal with seemingly overwhelming problems by learning to distinguish between the inevitable challenges in life and the pressure and anxieties created by one’s own negative thinking patterns about our self, other people and the world.
In therapy, you will learn to identify unrealistic or unhelpful thinking patterns and how to challenge them. With the help of your therapist you will start to make changes in your daily life.
What are the differences between CBT and other forms of talking therapies?
- Goal oriented
- Specific problem areas are identified by you and your therapist. Together strategies to achieve an effective resolution are developed.
- Behavioural practice/exposure
- Behavioural practice has been shown to be a very effective intervention. Client and therapist work together to design and carry out behavioural practice to help to achieve the agreed goals.
- Structured therapy sessions
- A main difference between CBT and other forms of talking therapies is the structure of the therapy sessions. You will talk about the things related to your goals and not just about anything which comes to your mind.
- Therapy is not restricted to the therapy session
- A major characteristic of CBT is behavioural practice. The aim is to practice what was discussed in the therapy sessions.
- All tasks are agreed between you and your therapist.
- You do remain in control.
- After the end of therapy, you may decide to continue with the things you have learned in therapy to maintain your progress.
- Collaborative relationship with the therapist
- You will not be told by your therapist what to do or not to do. Your therapist will work together with you to find solutions to your problems.
- Focus on the here and now
- The focus in CBT is on present problems and present solutions.
What to expect?
- Our initial contact will be a free of charge 15 minute long telephone conversation. Making the first step and talking to a stranger can be challenging but I will only need a brief outline of your problem and goals to understand whether your problem can be helped with CBT.
- You will not have to decide on the spot.
- You may wish to think about your options or contact other therapists.
- If we both feel that I can be helpful we can set up an initial face to face assessment where we can talk about your problems and goals in more details. This will take 90 minutes.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE VISIT THE FOLLOWING WEBSITES:
- NHS Choice www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Cognitive-Behavioural-Therapy
- THE NATIONAL INSTITUTE FOR HEALTH AND CARE EXCELLENCE (NICE) WWW.NICE.ORG.UK
- BRITISH ASSOCIATION OF COGNITIVE BEHAVIOUR THERAPY (BABCP) WWW.BABCP.COM
- ROYAL COLLEGE OF PSYCHIATRISTS WWW.RCPSYCH.AC.UK/MENTALHEALTHINFORMATION
- ROYAL COLLEGE OF MIDWIVES WWW.RCM.ORG.UK
- DIABETES UK www.diabetes.org.uk