You may have heard the term CBT being banded around, it is short for Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, and is one of the more widely used forms of therapy in the UK.
What is CBT?
CBT is a talking therapy that examines the way you think (cognition) in relation to the way you behave. Counselling with CBT involves talking about your views on the world, how you think about yourself and others, and how this affects your thoughts and feelings. CBT concentrates on the ‘here and now’ of human experience and what is observable. There is not much focus on the unconscious or of past experiences. This can help you to feel better by changing the way you think and to be aware of negative patterns of thought that may have been around for a long time. CBT theory asserts that it isn’t an event that will cause trauma but the meanings you associate with them.
How does CBT work?
CBT can help to examine behaviour by breaking down problems into smaller parts, usually consisting of;
- A difficult situation, followed by
- Physical feelings
- Behaviour or actions
All of these parts can affect the others and by identifying unhelpful ways of reacting, these can be eradicated.
When Does CBT Help?
CBT is used widely in NHS settings and is seen as a structured short term fix for many different types of issues. These include anxiety, depression, phobias, mood disorders, addictions, stress and obsessive compulsive disorders. CBT can also help with low self esteem and confidence building.
CBT is not effective for everyone as the individual must be committed to examine themselves in a trainer-pupil relationship and there can be ‘homework’ involved and regular paperwork to mark progress. However CBT does work as well as anti-depressants in many cases.