Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: Types, Techniques, and Uses

Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a form of treatment used by CBT therapists to help individuals identify their negative thoughts and patterns. Learn how to try CBT by yourself and what to do if it isn't working for you

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What Is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?

Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a form of treatment used by CBT therapists to help individuals identify their negative thoughts and patterns and work on them to build positive and new patterns for themselves.

This type of therapy is usually used to treat conditions like anxiety and depression and work on your self-esteem issues. Not only this but this therapy has proven to be quite effective and useful for people who tend to overthink, have too many negative thoughts, and are going through a major event in their lives.

What Is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?

Core Concepts of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

The core concept of cognitive behavioral therapy is primarily based on the idea that our thoughts lead to feelings, which tend to manifest in our behaviour. For example, if you keep on thinking negative thoughts about your work or something you wish to achieve, that is what you will feel and you will end up getting a negative result in the end.

Somehow, it is largely connected to the idea of what we feel, we end up getting. However, the concept of cognitive behavioral therapy is that we can change these negative thoughts and patterns and make way for positive ones. This has to be done consciously, but it is very much possible to do so if you understand what the root cause of your negative thoughts is and imply strategies to change it, like journaling, meditation, questioning your thoughts, and seeking professional help.

What Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Helps With

Cognitive behavioral therapy does not only help in treating mental health conditions but also helps in navigating the daily obstacles of life. Here are some of the things CBT therapy helps with:

What Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Helps With
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Post traumatic stress disorder
  • Panic attacks
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Obsessive compulsive disorder
  • Break up
  • Divorce
  • Overthinking
  • Low self-esteem
  • Chronic stress
  • Grief
  • General life difficulties
  • Relationship problems
  • Sleep issues

These are some of the common symptoms of anxiety. This doesn’t have to happen in severe cases, but it can also happen to people who tend to overthink every now and then.

Types of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

There are different types of therapies under cognitive behavior therapy that CBT therapists use according to the given situation and the personality of the person. So the types of CBT therapies are:

  1. Cognitive therapy

    This therapy focuses on identifying the negative thoughts and patterns that are causing negative behaviours to occur, challenging them, and changing them into positive thoughts and patterns.

  2. Rational emotive behaviour therapy

    This therapy focuses on tapping into the irrational beliefs a person carries, questioning them, and changing them to realistic belief patterns.

  3. Dialectical behaviour therapy

    This therapy focuses on concepts of mindfulness and emotional regulation through talk therapy. This helps people who have depression or borderline personality disorder.

  4. Multimodal therapy

    This therapy addresses all the facets that make up a human and are interconnected, which are cognition, behaviour, imagery, sensation, interpersonal relationships, behaviour, affect, and biological dynamics.

  5. Acceptance and commitment therapy

    This therapy focuses on accepting irrational and unwanted thoughts, as this makes the human mind understand that everything doesn’t need questioning and that some thoughts are simply thoughts. This works best for intrusive or catastrophic thoughts.

  6. Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy

    This therapy focuses on using mindfulness techniques to subside negative thoughts and bring the person to their real self. This usually helps people with anxiety disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder.

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Cognitive Behavioral Therapy vs. Other Therapies

Cognitive behavioral therapy is usually the only therapy that seems simple and easy to use. But for different cases, different therapies are needed. So here are other therapies that are used to treat severe mental health conditions or to lead a spiritual life.

  1. Psychodynamic therapy

    Psychodynamic therapy goes for a longer duration of time than CBT therapy, which usually lasts for 12-20 sessions.

    In the psychodynamic approach, therapists tend to go into the unconscious minds of their clients, where they reveal information about their childhood experiences, emotional patterns, and experiences that might have led to a certain pattern or behaviour. The therapist takes note of the client’s history and asks the client to be as open and honest as possible.

  2. Behavioral therapy

    There are certain behaviours that have a negative effect on our lives. So in this approach, instead of looking at past experiences to understand the root cause of the behaviour, it focuses on how to change those patterns and behaviors in the current state.

    This is mostly used to change the current behavior, which might be problematic and may cause tension for the person. For example: smoking.

  3. Humanistic therapy

    This therapy is a bit spiritual and focuses on the human’s ability to become self-aware and whole with themselves instead of viewing the problems and working on them.

    The therapy session is directed by the client and the therapist gives them full freedom and space to choose their space and navigate their difficulties. This therapy is primarily based on the idea that humans can become their whole selves without needing any essential help from the outside world.

Key Benefits of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

There are many benefits of cognitive behavior therapy that are not only restricted to your personal life but go beyond that. Let’s see what the major benefits are:

  1. Affordable

    Cognitive behavior therapy is extremely affordable, as it usually goes for 12-20 sessions and the cost usually starts at Rs. 500 INR.

  2. Short duration

    As compared to psychodynamic therapies and other extensive therapies, this therapy goes for a short duration of time—approximately 12-20 sessions—and doesn’t feel too hectic and heavy.

  3. Long term benefits

    Cognitive therapy lasts a short period of time but has long term benefits for the person and their overall lifestyle as it helps them understand their thoughts and feelings more clearly.

  4. Flexible

    Cognitive therapy is extremely flexible in the sense that it not only focuses on tapping into irrational thoughts but also working on them with fun activities. Moreover, it can also be taken via online modes of communication, making it accessible to more people.

  5. Versatile

    Cognitive behavioral therapy is extremely versatile because it gives the client the freedom to do activities that work for them and helps them manage their thoughts, like journaling, meditation, positive affirmations, or even introspection.

  6. Key Benefits of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

    All in all, this therapy is extremely beneficial for people who overthink and are at risk of developing depression or anxiety. .

Things to Keep In Mind

While cognitive behaviour is a go-to therapy for many people, there are some things one should strictly keep in mind, like that CBT techniques help you develop certain skills that need to be practiced every now and then to get better results.

Secondly, identifying your thoughts and working on them for a better result won’t happen instantly; it will take time so it is important to be patient and keep your head down while going to therapy.

Thirdly, it can be very challenging to question your thoughts and shed the layers that aren’t yours. But instead of taking it as an obstacle, take it as a challenge to power through this struggle.

Lastly, cognitive therapy isn’t the only option one has; you can try different therapies according to your situation, as not every being is fond of this therapy or gets the best result from it.

List of Cognitive Behaviour Therapists

If you are looking for a cognitive behavior therapist, then you can find a list of therapists who can help you with your irrational thoughts and patterns. Here is a list of therapists who can help you with your thoughts:

Change your irrational thoughts with CBT
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How Can Now&Me Help?

If you are looking for an online mental health platform that helps you identify your irrational thoughts and make way for positive ones with the help of a CBT therapist, then you can try Now&Me by opting for the first chat for free.

If you wish to try out which therapist suits you the best, then you can try out different therapists by taking bite sized therapy, which means taking short sessions starting at just Rs. 30 to understand which therapist suits your needs the best.

The experts at Now&Me are well-qualified and have been handpicked to provide you with the best services so that you feel safe and comfortable while sharing your personal stories with them. Our experts understand the importance of confidentiality and how important and special a therapeutic relationship is and they make sure to nurture it and make you feel the best while you are at your lowest.

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