CBT is a collaborative therapeutic approach that teaches clients important connections between thoughts, behaviours, emotions, and physical sensations.
CBT is an evidence-based therapeutic approach and is considered the gold standard for many psychological disorders. CBT enables individuals to become aware of unhelpful thought patterns and challenge these thoughts. This allows an individual to develop a more balanced perspective towards difficult and triggering situations. In doing so, people learn to see triggering situations from a variety of perspectives. This can enable people to better understand the full picture of what might be happening and why they might be getting stuck in unhelpful thinking patterns.
CBT incorporates behavioural approaches (i.e., Exposure and Response Prevention; behavioural experiments) to allow people to begin to approach situations that are usually avoided due to high levels of distress. In doing so, individuals learn that what they fear might not happen or that they can embrace the uncertainty of not always knowing what the outcome of a feared situation might be. Individuals often experience distress and catastrophic thoughts during exposure work. With enough practice and repeated exposure work, people will report that they can handle the difficult thoughts and feelings. This process is very important for ongoing change. Individuals will practice both in vivo (i.e., in real life) and imaginal exposure work as part of CBT.
CBT also offers individuals several cognitive skills, which allow for shifts in our thought processes as well as shifts in our relationships to these thoughts. People learn strategies such as thought records, continuum techniques and the responsibility pie. The exploration of core belief work is also an important ingredient as it allows individuals to better understand what is driving their fears and unhelpful thought patterns. Individuals find these skills to be very powerful. They often allow for insight into what fuels difficult reactions in a variety of situations.
Overall, CBT is a skills-based approach which enables people to, ultimately, become their own therapist. In doing so, individuals learn how to approach challenging situations and how to keep pushing themselves into situations that once appeared too daunting to face. CBT is a powerful approach that offers many tools for individuals dealing with a variety of presentations.
All our associates have extensive expertise with CBT treatment. We use this approach when working with individuals with OCD and OCD-Related Disorders. We also use CBT in group formats for OCD and for a variety of other presenting issues, including anxiety, depression, trauma, academic-related stress, anger management, emotional issues and life transitions.