Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

 

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is based on the idea that our thoughts cause our feelings and behaviors, not external things, like people, situations, and events. The benefit of this fact is that we can change the way we think, to feel and act better, even if the situation does not change. It is a form of therapy that emphasizes the important role of thinking in how we feel and what we do. CBT aims to help the client to become aware of thought distortions which are causing psychological distress, and of behavioral patterns which are reinforcing it, and to correct them. The therapist will make every effort to understand experiences from the client’s point of view, and the client and therapist will work collaboratively, exploring the client’s thoughts, assumptions and inferences. The therapist helps the client learn to test these by checking them against reality and against other assumptions.

Cognitive-behavioral therapists seek to learn what their clients want out of life (their goals) and then help their clients achieve those goals. The therapist’s role is to listen, teach, and encourage, while the client’s role is to express concerns, learn, and implement that learning.

The goal of therapy is to help clients unlearn their unwanted reactions and to learn a new way of reacting. When people understand how and why they are doing well, they know what to do to continue doing well.

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Ridding Your Life of Baggage

This is by far my favorite time of year. You can feel the chill in the air, see the beauty of the leaves changing color and witness God‘s magic. As the leaves fall from the comfort of the trees, new leaves will be reborn next spring. This is the perfect time to take a look at your own life — which areas need to be buried and reborn with a fresh perspective. Are there aspects of yourself that you would rather move away from? Are there parts of your life that you would like to create a clean slate? What part of your life would you dream of comparing to the falling of the leaves? You would be able to let go of everything draining and consuming in your life and replace it with fresh, full-of-life energy. Why not let go of all tasks, people and responsibilities that deplete you, and replace them with those things that fill you up and bring you joy. You can, once again, wait until next year, next week, or next month, to get started, or you can begin today. As fall comes and goes every year, you, too, can take advantage once a year of ridding your life of toxic baggage and replacing it with what excites you and fulfills you.

Steps to take action:

1. Let it go

Which parts of your life are taxing and all-consuming? Divide your life into sections if it makes it easier; career, family, relationships, etc…What can you let go of?  If something in your life creates more negativity and stress than feel-good energy, you might want to consider letting it go.

  1. Your priorities

What do you value above all else in your life? Family…career…health and well-being? Make a list from the most important to the least important. How is your time currently being spent? Is your time going toward activities and responsibilities that are not high on your priority list? Maybe it is time to take a closer look at where you are putting your energy. Over-extending yourself, due to not prioritizing, only depletes you of the energy you need for the things that fulfill you. Do not be afraid to ask others for help, so you don’t take on more than you can handle. Over-extending yourself affects you and everyone in your life, in a negative way.  If you don’t take care of yourself, you won’t have what you need to take care of others.

  1. Have fun!

When making changes in your life, it can become all-consuming. It is important to create “fun” time or “me” time amidst all the craziness. Schedule it in like any other appointment or commitment. You need time to relax and wind down. Make this a priority this week. This time is crucial in rejuvenating yourself to continue forward.

 

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