Cognitive Behaviour Therapy CBT

Cognitive Behaviour Therapy CBTWhat is CBT?

  • How you think about yourself, the world and other people
  • How what you do affects your thoughts and feelings/thoughts, feelings, affect what you do

CBT can help you to change how you think (“Cognitive”) and what you do (“Behaviour)”. These changes help you to feel better. Unlike some of the other talking treatments, it focuses on the “here and now” problems and difficulties. Instead of focussing on the causes of your distress, the past, it looks for ways to improve your state of mind NOW.

It has been found to be helpful in resolving:
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Panic
  • Agoraphobia and other phobias
  • Motivation
  • Social phobia
  • Bulimia
  • Obsessive compulsive disorder
  • Post traumatic stress disorder
  • Schizophrenia

How does it work?

Cognitive Behaviour Therapy addresses the feelings of hopelessness that accompany a situation, it changes pessimistic ideas, unrealistic expectations.

CBT can help you to make sense of overwhelming problems by breaking them down into smaller parts. This makes it easier to see how they are connected and how they affect you. These parts are:

  • A Situation – a problem, event or difficult situationFrom this can follow:
  • Thoughts
  • Emotions
  • Physical feelings
  • Actions 

Each of these areas can affect the others. How you think about a problem can affect how you feel physically and emotionally. It can also alter what you do about it.

There are helpful (positive) and unhelpful (negative) ways of reacting to most situations, depending on how you think about them. For example:

Situation: You’ve had a bad day, feel fed up, so go for a walk. As you walk down the road, someone you know walks by and, apparently, ignores you.
Thoughts: He/she ignored me – they don’t like me He/she looks a bit engrossed in themselves – I wonder if there’s something wrong?
Low, sad and rejected Concerned for the other person
Physical: Stomach cramps, low energy, feel sick None – feel comfortable
Action: Go home and avoid them Get in touch to make sure they’re OK

The same situation has led to two very different results, depending on how you thought about the situation. How you think has affected how you felt and what you did. In the example in the left hand column, you’ve jumped to a conclusion without very much evidence for it – and this matters, because it’s led to:

  • a number of uncomfortable feelings
  • an unhelpful (negative) behaviour.

If you go home feeling depressed, you’ll probably brood on what has happened and feel worse. If you don’t get in touch with the other person, you won’t have the chance to correct any misunderstandings about what they think of you – and you will probably feel even worse. However, if you do get in touch with the person, there’s a good chance you’ll feel better about yourself

In CBT sessions, the therapist working with you, helps you to learn how to change negative (unhelpful) thoughts and or behaviour to positive (helpful) thoughts and behaviour.

The Work

  • With the therapist, you break each problem down into its separate parts, as in the example above. To help this process, your therapist may ask you to keep a diary. This will help you to identify your individual patterns of thoughts, emotions, bodily feelings and actions.
  • Together you will look at your thoughts, feelings and behaviours to work out:
    – if they are unrealistic or unhelpful
    – how they affect each other, and you.
  • The therapist will then help you to work out how to change unhelpful thoughts and behaviours
  • It’s easy to talk about doing something, much harder to actually do it. So, after you have identified what you can change, your therapist will recommend “homework” – you practise these changes in your everyday life. Depending on the situation, you might start to:

    • Question a self-critical or upsetting thought and replace it with a positive (and more realistic) one that you have developed in CBT
    • recognise that you are about to do something that will make you feel worse and, instead, do something more helpful.

The relaxing/hypnosis sessions assist you with this, as it gently guides the unconscious mind to achieve this.

What does CBT involve?

The sessions

June’s sessions are carried out on an individual basis, therapy specifically designed for you.

  • The first session is the initial consultation. You explain how you’re feeling, how
    the condition is affecting your life. June will ask you questions about your past
    life and background. Although CBT concentrates on the here and now, at times
    you may need to talk about the past to understand how it is affecting you now.
  • Weekly sessions lasting about 1 1/4 hours
  • The first part of the session is discussing what’s happened, how this has affected you, is it realistic or negative? If the latter, discuss different perceptions, ways this can change, be dealt with. You decide what you want to deal with in the short, medium and long term. During this part June may give you some self help sheets, for you to take home and consider.
  • The second part is relaxation, using gentle hypnosis, placing into your mind wide-set parameters of anticipation and change for the future. You have an ability to adapt and feel good about changing. You do have more choices in life.
  • At each meeting you discuss how you’ve got on since the last session. Your therapist can help with suggestions if any of the tasks seem too hard or don’t seem to be helping.
  • You will not be asked to do things you don’t want to do – you decide the pace of the treatment and what you will and won’t try. The strength of CBT is that you can continue to practise and develop your skills even after the sessions have finished. This makes it less likely that your symptoms or problems will return.

How effective is CBT?

  • It is one of the most effective treatments for conditions where anxiety or depression is the main problem
  • It is the most effective psychological treatment for moderate and severe depression
  • It has long lasting/permanent results
And, you may be interested… A Short History on Cognitive Behaviour Therapy

The above information taken from the Royal College of Psychiatrists

Aaron T. Beck MD: in 1967 experimental approach for depressive illness was devised by Aaron T Beck, a US psychiatrist and psycho-analyst. Beck discovered during his analytical sessions, patients had an internal negative dialogue which many of them were not aware of. The link between thoughts and feelings is highly important. Dysfunctional behaviour is dysfunctional thinking, and that thinking process is shaped by underlying beliefs. Dr Beck found by identifying these negative thoughts, and then changing them, was the key to overcome their depression/problems. Beck called this cognitive therapy.

Telephone now to book an initial consultation to discuss your problems
in confidence and learn what CBT/hypnotherapy can do for you.
Call 01327 341140 or 07759 003185


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