For the next few weeks Wellness Wednesday will explore different treatment modalities to assist readers in recognizing the variety of options available to them to support their needs and move forward towards wellness. We will also feature a few guest authors who specialize in different modalities, while #WellnessWednesday's Jessica enjoys a little vacation-based self-care.
CBT stands for Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and relies on the premise that our thoughts, behaviours, and emotions are interconnected. Because of this interconnection, CBT upholds that a change in one domain will lead to a change in the other domain. Therefore, if anxiety (an emotion) is the target of desired change, a CBT clinician will help you learn to change your thoughts and your behaviours to best lead to changes in your experience of anxiety.
When it comes to changing thought processes, CBT aims to help individuals learn to identify unhelpful negative thoughts that emerge almost “automatically”. Upon identifying these thoughts, your therapist assists you in learning how to challenge those thoughts, identify cognitive errors that have emerged (i.e. when your brain is lying to you), and choose adaptive alternative thoughts to replace the negative thoughts with.
Within the behavioural domain, CBT aims to help you identify behaviours that maintain a depressive or anxious cycle while identifying behaviours that might help an individual to reverse that cycle.
CBT is structured, goal oriented, and therapist driven. If you are looking for a type of therapy that is action focussed and assigns weekly homework to help integrate teachings into your daily life then it might be a great fit for you. Be mindful that many therapists occupy a more eclectic approach to treatment, piecing together two or more types of therapy in a way that often augments CBT with other tools personalized to your needs. CBT is very present oriented, but occasional discussion of your past may be relevant to understanding the present.
Jessica is a member of the clinical wellness and learning support team at FLEX Psychology. Jessica started Wellness Wednesday out of a desire to provide further opportunities for her clients to extend their wellness journey to all avenues of their life. You can learn more about Jessica by clicking here or by learning more about her and the clinical team at FLEX Psychology by clicking here.