Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Cognitive behavioral therapy is grounded in the belief that it is a person’s perception of events – rather than the events themselves – that determines how he or she will feel and act in response.  If your interpretation of events is accurate, then your emotions will be authentic and appropriate to the situation.  The trouble comes in when we interpret things in an overly biased way.  Life is difficult enough without amplifying negative emotions with ones own thought processes.

With CBT, you’ll learn to identify and replace the types of thoughts that directly influence your negative emotions and problematic behavior. This reframing process is referred to as cognitive reconstructing, which happens through different CBT techniques.  You will also learn ways to modify your stress level by addressing the physical and nervous system responses to challenging events in the world.

Some examples of common problematic thought processes are:

  • All-or-nothing thinking
  • Jumping to conclusions
  • Catastrophizing
  • Mind reading (believing you know what others think, without checking it out.)
  • Overgeneralizing

While CBT can be delivered in a structured format, in my practice I work instead to educate clients about the concepts and practices of this approach and then use the ideas in conversation as opportunities arise.