CBT, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy

Booking on the Hypno-Cognitive Behavioural Therapy®, (HCBT) course, was to help me understand and put into practice what CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) is.

To understand the therapy, I firstly needed to understand the words used to describe CBT.

    Cognitive         refers to the way a person thinks about themselves, others and the world around them.

    Behavioural     how and what a person does, affects the way they develop their thoughts and feelings.

    Therapy            helps the person to change their world, preferably for the better.

CBT is known as a “talking” therapy, and deals with the here and now, unlike some other therapies which look for the cause of the problems and difficulties, by going back into the past, and even further back into past life. CBT looks for ways to improve the state of mind, now.

CBT is said to help people with mental health problems such as anxiety, depression, panic attacks, phobias, OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder), post traumatic stress disorder, schizophrenia and eating disorders, and was developed out of Joseph Wolpe’s behaviour therapy in the 1950’s, combining Cognitive Therapy (CT) of Aaron Beck and Rational-Emotive Behaviour Therapy (REBT) of Albert Ellis, and other psychotherapies treatments of that time.

By taking a situation or event, we will process this in our brains, and this will lead to us having thoughts about it, which could create emotions, give us physical feelings which will lead to some actions that we will take.

Perhaps a loved one has not telephoned as expected. This situation can be taken in many ways, and it is how the thoughts are processed that feelings and thus emotions and outcomes are generated.

Example 1

No telephone call.

    Thoughts                Does not love me, they are out with another person.

    Emotions                Envy, jealousy, sad, upset.

    Physical Feelings    Crying, panic, feeling sick

    Action                     Argue, retaliate.

Example 2

No telephone call.

    Thoughts                He/she is in an important meeting.

    Emotions                Proud, supportive.

    Physical Feelings    Relaxed, feeling comfortable

    Action                     Prepare a nice meal.

If we take the situation the wrong way, there could be a feedback system or looping, which will generate even more bad feelings, thus creating a vicious circle, leading perhaps to anxiety, stress, depression if not stopped.

CBT aims to break this cycle, by introducing, or in NLP terms reframing, alternative solutions that can be accepted by the client, by changing the way the situation is thought about (cognitive) and what is done about it (behavioural).

Typically a client will take the therapy for from six weeks or even six months, compared to perhaps one or two sessions with a competent NLP Practitioner.

An advantage of taking longer over the therapy (that is weeks) is that the client is monitored, but this also means the treatment is slow.

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