Cognitive therapy has played a very important role in helping me cope with depression and chronic pain in the past I've learned to incorporate its principles into my everyday life.
Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy is a type of psychotherapy which focuses on the impact of thinking on how we feel and what we do. The major concept that Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy is based on is on the theory that changing negative thinking patterns and behaviors can have a potent effect on a person's emotions the goal of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy is to identify analyze and change counterproductive thinking and behavior. over the long term reducing the effects of stress, Depression, anxiety and even pain.
Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy or CBT is an umbrella term for several different approaches to CBT. The different types of approaches include:
Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy
Cognitive Therapy Aaron T. Beck image via beckinstitute.org Rational Behavior Therapy
Rational Living Therapy
Schema Focused Therapy
Dialectical Behavior Therapy
Albert Ellis who is widely recognized as the grandfather of cognitive psychology was one of the first people to present the idea that irrational beliefs are at the center of most psychological problems. He created a therapeutic approach called rational emotive behaviour therapy (REBT)
What is REBT?
this is a quotation from Albert Ellis Institute website
"REBT is a practical, action-oriented approach to coping with problems and enhancing personal growth. REBT places a good deal of its focus on the present: on currently-held attitudes, painful emotions and maladaptive behaviors that can sabotage a fuller experience of life. REBT also provides people with an individualized set of proven techniques for helping them to solve problems. REBT practitioners work closely with individuals, seeking to help uncover their individual set of beliefs (attitudes, expectations and personal rules) that frequently lead to emotional distress. "
Aaron T. Beck who was originally trained as a psychoanalyst is known as the father of cognitive psychology. He created cognitive therapy in the 1960s his motivation for creating cognitive therapy was that he became disillusioned with psychoanalytic techniques. Psychoanalytic therapies are based on treating the underlying unconscious drives and emotions. Beck believed that focusing on cognition was the most effective way to treat patients. Cognition is the way in which people perceive an attribute meaning to events in their lives. Beck thought that conditions such as depression were caused and/or exacerbated by negative perceptions of events. He put together a list of cognitive errors that he felt contributed to depression these errors in thought could have the effect of making depression much worse. Some examples of these errors are:
magnification of negative thoughts and minimization of positive thoughts
Cognitive therapy's goal is to identify and replace negative thought patterns. It seeks to modify ways of thinking which are unrealistic and distorted. An ultimately change feelings and behaviors.
Aaron T. Beck initially focused on depression. He outlined his methodology for the causes and treatment of depression in 1967. He then broadened the scope of his focus to anxiety disorders. He further expanded the approach to treat emotional disorders and other problems as time went on.
Beck also talked about the notion of the schema which is the underlying way in which people process information. People's schemas affect the way we view ourselves, the outside world and future events.
The cognitive view of psychology conflicted with behaviorism which was one of the dominant psychological theories of the time. Behaviorists said that mental processes were not scientifically valid or meaningful. Behaviorists were solely focused on the stimulus and response paradigm But in the 1970s there was a revolution that saw cognitive psychology and its ideas gain prominence. Eventually behavior modification techniques and cognitive therapy became combined into cognitive behavior therapy. Although there are some cognitive therapists who seek to keep cognitive therapy as a stand-alone form of therapeutic practice.
Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy's main goal is to teach the client effective ways of dealing with their psychological and/or physical condition the CBT therapist seeks to give the client techniques and strategies that can be used to effectively adapt to situations
In the near future I will write an article about how I personally used cognitive behavioral therapy techniques to cope with my chronic pain.