Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

What is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)?

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a type of talk therapy which centers around reframing unhelpful or negative thoughts. Restructuring ones’ thoughts, especially to change how thoughts interferes with unhelpful emotions can help individuals effectively manage them. CBT may be most effective for people experiencing conditions such as:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression

What does anxiety feel like? Symptoms of anxiety may appear in many ways. Some people may feel physical symptoms such as:

  • Sweating
  • Rapid breathing
  • Increased heart rate
  • Feeling tense/restless

While many people experience these feelings, not all symptoms of anxiety are physical. Other symptoms can affect how one thinks such as:

  • Irritability
  • Trouble focusing/concentrating
  • Fear of losing control
  • Excessive worrying

Why is CBT helpful? Often times, many people experience automatic thoughts which unintentionally come to mind. These can be frequent and sometimes are a response to a particular feeling, event, or triggering thought. These automatic thoughts are often negative and occur without awareness. Deep seeded negative automatic thoughts often become detrimental for one’s overall well-being. View the slideshow to see examples of what patterns of automatic thoughts can look like:

Automatic thoughts are frequently rooted in beliefs that people hold about themselves and are therefore biased. They relate to ones’ perception of self, hence, if someone has a negative image of themselves, their abilities, or experiences, these thoughts will often reflect that. The purpose of CBT is to alter this thought process and change this pattern of destructive thinking by confronting extreme beliefs thoughts with more realistic thoughts.

Specific steps that are a part of CBT may include:

  • Identifying situations/things in life that are distressing you
  • Acknowledging your feelings/thoughts about them
  • Recognizing negative thought/emotional patterns
  • Restructuring thinking into a positive view [1]

[1] Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: What Is CBT? | Understood

We also provide caregiver support psychotherapy to individuals who care for a family member or loved one with a cognitive disorder.