Cognitive Behaviour Therapy ….A Primer

I had the chance to attend a short conference on the subject of cognitive behaviour therapy in the context of

mood and anxiety disorders….Some is shared here…It is worth a basic understanding. The key concept is that there

is a close contact between thought,feelings, and behaviour. Many people suffer from anxiety or depression because of the negative

weight given to our automatic thoughts.Sometimes by habit or parental/environmental modeling, we allow negative thought to

have more weight than positive thoughts.Cognitive therapy helps an individual recognize the negative thinking pattern,and negative repetitive thoughts,

and challenge their veracity/or whether the thoughts are realistic( or even true) The idea is to challenge the thought distortions. There are many thought distortions.

Some can be listed as “black/white thinking;overgeneralizing;discounting; exaggerating/catastrophizing;mind reading;fortune-telling;”shoulds”;personalizing…


An example of a thought distortion…” I am alone” leads to ” I feel lonely” leads to ” I won’t go out

alone on my own” leads to “withdrawal from friends and family” leads to ” No one wants to be with me” leads to ” People don’t go out with me because they don’t like me”

The distortion is that being alone has little to do with people not liking you. People who think like this have progressively worse self isolation and often develop agarophobia.

People like this often can enter into Supported Self Management.

The essence of the process is

1.Identify the thought distortion

2.Note the nature and content of the thought

3.challenge the( truth or logic of) the  thought

4.create a new and more reasonable thought ( or assessment) which permits for

5. A change of behaviour.


The KEY is that the individual NEEDS to DO the WORK

An individual can have a “coach” or “therapist” whose role is to ensure that you do the work ( the assignments are often

found in a work book which you go through) It is imperative to do the exercises…NOT just read about them


Here is a LIST of Recommended Resources for Depression and Anxiety


1.     ( highly recommended)



4. ( Living Life to the Fullest )



1. Ten Days to Self Esteem  ( Burns)  highly recommended

2. Mind Over Mood  ( Greenberger and Padesky)

3. CBT “for Dummies”

4. The Anxiety and Worry Workbook  ( Clark and Beck)

5. Overcoming Depression One Step at a Time  ( Clark and Beck)

6. Behavioural Activation For Depression ( Martel)



The Key to this methodology helping you is DOING THE WORK REQUIRED in the workbook.









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