CBT is one of the most commonly practiced therapeutic interventions out there. But what exactly is CBT?
Cognitive-behavioral therapy focuses on a person’s cognitions, which are their thinking patterns, and behaviors. It is based on the principle that your thoughts influence your attitudes and behavior.
Moreover, negative thoughts can negatively impact your behavior, and positive thoughts can bring about positive behaviors. Harboring negative thoughts can contribute to a person developing psychological disorders or even make worsen them.
Thus, CBT focuses on identifying and changing negative thoughts and thinking patterns that influence our behavior.
CBT includes a wide range of techniques that have unique characteristics and various applications. Some of the commonly practiced techniques in CBT include:
- Cognitive therapy.
- Dialectal behavioral therapy.
- Multimodal therapy.
- Rational emotive behavior therapy (REBT).
Thinking about starting your practice?
These days, many people are interested in specializing in different fields of psychology. This is because the demand for such professionals has increased due to the increasing awareness regarding mental health and its importance.
However, a graduate degree such as a master’s is one of the main requirements for specialization or starting your practice. To start working as a professional, you need to get a graduate degree and get licensed as well.
Several institutions offer graduate degrees for almost every branch in psychology. Thus, if you want to pursue a specialization within CBT and want to become a mental health professional, credentialed in offering mental health services then an applied psychology programs online can be the perfect fit for you. The online format can help you avail a degree in psychology without leaving the comfort of your own home.
CBT is increasingly becoming popular with time. Many people choose to get therapy to deal with their psychological distress and disorders. So, let’s take a look at the reasons why you should give this amazing therapeutic intervention a try.
Efficient and effective
Therapy can often be time consuming, as it should be, but the appointment charges can rack up fast. However, that is not the case with CBT. This form of psychotherapy consists of 5-20 sessions, depending on the severity or type of your mental health problem. The sessions do not exceed 30-60 minutes per session.
In addition to this, numerous researches back up the effectiveness of CBT for various psychological processes. For instance, a meta-analysis of surveys regarding the efficacy of CBT was conducted.
The results concluded that CBT showed higher success rates than other treatment methods. Moreover, it was found to be more effective for disorders such as anxiety, bulimia nervosa, anger management issues, and more.
Identifies problematic situations
Recording patient history is an important part of CBT. The therapist may ask you probing questions regarding your personal, family, marital, sexual, medical history, or any other area of your life. This helps in understanding where the patient is coming from and what situation they’re likely to face in their environment.
The therapist also asks you about problematic situations that you think may have contributed to your psychological distress. However, the therapist can also help you identify these problems if you are unable to do so yourself.
Psychoeducation means educating the client regarding the psychological problem they are facing. The therapist explains everything to the client so they can understand their problem and actively try to get better.
The therapist educates the client about the problem, its causes, and how they are going to tackle it. It includes information regarding the risk factors that contributed to the problems, steps of treatment and recovery, and all related information.
Does not necessarily deal with the past
CBT is problem-oriented. It focuses on identifying and dealing with problems that the client may be facing right now. The goal is to eliminate or reduce symptoms and improve the outlook on life.
However, if the client reports facing any traumatic experience in the past, such as sexual abuse, the therapist should focus on that too. This is because such past experiences can play a causative role in developing mental disorders.
Overall, CBT is mainly focused on the present. So, it is suitable for people who do not want to talk about their past—as most mental health experts get a bad rap for that particular reason.
Alters your thinking patterns
CBT aims to identify your faulty or negative thinking patterns and enables you to actively challenge them. By challenging these thought processes, they can be eliminated and replaced with positive thoughts.
Such thoughts contribute to maladaptive behaviors. Thus, by changing these thoughts, such behavior can also be improved and eliminated. However, this process can be difficult for people who struggle with introspection.
A collaborative process
CBT is a collaborative process between the therapist and the client. This means that active participation is required from the client’s side. The therapist helps the client set goals and helps in achieving them as well.
Moreover, the therapist often gives various exercises and homework to the client which is a part of the treatment. Thus, motivation to get better and active participation is essential for CBT to be effective.
Effective for multiple psychological problems
Another great quality of CBT is that it is effective for a wide range of psychological disorders and problems. According to research, CBT can act as an effective treatment method for:
- Anger management problems.
- Anxiety, depression, and bipolar disorders.
- Eating disorders.
- General stress and much more.
Cognitive-behavioral therapy is one of the most popular therapeutic interventions. It aims to identify and challenge negative thoughts, that consequently affect behavior. Moreover, its effectiveness is backed by multiple research papers. There are many benefits to choosing CBT. For instance, it is effective for treating a wide range of psychological problems. CBT focuses on alleviating mental health symptoms with the help of different exercises and techniques. Finally, you should remember that the relationship between the client and the therapist also plays an important role in recovery.