Safe Harbor Treatment Center

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy – CBT

Effective Treatment

The Cognitive Behavior Therapy approach of psychotherapy has proven to be one of the most effective psychological approaches for a wide range of behavioral problems. In Cognitive Behavior Therapy, the psychotherapist works with the client to identify and evaluate behavioral problems. The purpose of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is to focus on problems that arise from conflicting relationships between thoughts, feelings and behavior. The therapist relies on the patient for the development of an understanding of the individual’s behavioral problems. As soon as the therapist is able to develop an understanding of the individual’s problem, he or she defines multiple therapy strategies and objectives, which are continuously reviewed and observed. It should here be noted that Behavioral and Cognitive Psychotherapists work with individuals as well as families and groups. 

Cognitive Behavioral therapy is a form of psychoanalysis that focuses on the importance of thinking in determining human actions. Cognitive behavioral psychotherapists believe that the thinking of an individual influences his or her actions and emotions. Hence, if an individual is experiencing undesirable feelings and behaviors, it is a result of his or her thinking. It is therefore important to identify the thinking, which is the primary cause of undesirable behavior or emotions, and to replace it with productive thoughts that may lead to desirable behaviors. At present, psychotherapists adopt several different approaches to psychotherapy including Rational Behavior Therapy, Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy, Cognitive Therapy and Rational Living Therapy.

Length of Treatment

One of the most important treatment considerations in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is the length of the treatment. A number of factors affect the length of the treatment. Among these factors, the most important ones include the mental and emotional state of the individual at the time the therapy begins, the nature and rigorousness of the symptoms, affect of the problem on patient’s social life, work performance & daily functioning and finally individual’s expectation from the treatment. Using these factors, a psychotherapist can estimate the length of the treatment. However, it should be noted that some of these factors cannot be assessed in the initial stages of the treatment and therefore psychotherapists have to rely on guesswork.

Treating Trauma with CBT

Unfortunately, many women, during their lifetime may endure a traumatic experience of some form. One in six women will be sexually assaulted during their lifetime. Following a traumatic experience some women are able to cope and lead a productive life; others are may not have the necessary support to deal with the issues that arise from such an experience and their lives become a daily struggle. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is on of the often used tools to aid in the recovery of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

The act of sexual assault on a woman is completely out of their control, but from these studies, we can distinguish that there are some steps to take to avoid life long trauma. Obviously the age when one is sexually assaulted is uncontrollable, but how you decide to appraise your experience and how and if you acknowledge the assault is manageable. Acknowledging what has happened to you, reporting it to the police, and seeking treatment are all preventive actions that can be taken to avoid PTSD. In addition, how one perceives the assault and consequences have an impact on whether or not the victim will develop PTSD. Negative appraisals are directly related to PTSD symptoms. Understanding PTSD and how to avoid the disorder after a traumatic experience is extremely important. More research, particularly longitudinal studies, should be performed on the facts that predispose people to PTSD.

Creating a Therapeutic Plan

As a therapist learns about the personal objectives of the patient, he develops strategies to help the patient in achieving those objectives. These strategies are developed keeping in view the personal objectives of the patient. The therapist then develops a therapeutic plan for the client. During each session, the therapist comes up with a certain plan and delivers a specific lesson according to that plan. Throughout the entire process, the therapist teaches different techniques and concepts to the patient, which may later prove to be useful in achieving his or her objectives.

Many clinical problems are best described as disorders of thought and feeling, and since behavior is effectively controlled by the way we think the most logical and effective way of trying to change maladjusted behavior is to change the unbalanced thought processes that lie behind it. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is comprised of both cognitive and behavioral techniques. The premise underlying a cognitive-behavioral is that difficulties in living, relationships, general health, etc., have their origin in and are maintained by both cognitive and behavioral factors.

Thoughts Determine Feelings

Cognitive Behavioral therapy is unique because it covers a number of different therapies that have similar foundations.  One of the primary understandings of this philosophy is that our thoughts determine our feelings. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy examines the client’s feelings in order to discover what thoughts are bringing these feelings about, especially if they are interfering with one’s mental or emotional health. So the concept of seeking to help the client understand that they behave and feel according to their perceptions or ideas about people and experiences, not necessarily according to what is true. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is basically used to help people understand their emotions and thoughts.

Unlike some therapies Cognitive Behavioral Therapy doesn’t really focus on the past. Rather it looks at the present and the way people view themselves, others, and the world around them. It looks at how the way people feel affects how they act, and what they do. Cognitive refers to the way people think, and behavior to what people so. By changing negative thought patterns, people can start to feel better about themselves and look towards a more positive future. CBT is based on the scientifically supported assumption that most emotional and behavioral reactions are learned.

Goals of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

The goal of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is to help clients unlearn their unwanted reactions and to learn a new way of reacting. It is not an invasive therapy it helps the patient to discover and learn how to understand why they experience the emotions and feelings that they have. It teaches them not to be reactive and that they have control over what they think. It can be seen that cognitive therapy, rather than just teach the patient to be more positive in life, it actually teaches to patient to look at situations in a non-negative way there is a difference.

The word cognitive or cognition means to know or to think, so Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is seen as psychological treatment of thought, this in my opinion is key to understand the foundation of the therapy. The more open minded the person is, the more successful the outcome. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy functions under the thinking that thoughts, beliefs, attitudes and perceptual biases, influence what emotions will be experienced and to how powerful these emotions can be.