Defining Cognitive Therapy

cognitive therapy which is sometimes known as cognitive behavioral therapy is a form of talk therapy and it’s been shown in well over a thousand randomized controlled research studies to be effective for a whole range of problems the idea behind cognitive therapy is that the way that people think about things influences how they feel emotionally and what they do behaviorally and when people are in psychological distress often their thinking is just not realistic or accurate and certainly not helpful so one important part about cognitive therapy is helping people identify the thinking that’s leading them to feel so distressed or to act in ways that aren’t very helpful to them and then learn how to evaluate their thinking to see how realistic it is but there are many many aspects to cognitive therapy that’s just one of them for the most part with many different disorders we engage in problem-solving at every session and teaching patients skills skills to evaluate their thinking skills to change their behavior we try to do this in as short a period of time as we can so some patients might come to treatment just for six or eight sessions when cases are more complicated patients might be in therapy for even a year or even a little bit longer but we call it time sensitive what we’re really trying to do is to teach people skills so that they can become their own therapist and we tell people that the way that they get better is by making small changes in how they think and in what they do every day

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