Mainstream cognitive behavioural therapy assumes that changing maladaptive thinking leads to change in affect and behaviour. CBT techniques help individuals challenge their thought patterns and beliefs and replace errors in thinking such as over-generalizing, minimising positives, magnifying negatives and catastrophizing with more realistic and effective thoughts, thus decreasing emotional distress and self-defeating behaviour or to take a more open, mindful, and aware posture toward them so as to diminish their impact. Mainstream CBT helps individuals replace “maladaptive coping skills, cognitions, emotions and behaviours with more adaptive ones”, by challenging an individual’s way of thinking and the way that he/she reacts to certain habits or behaviours.
I go through stages/episodes of producing a body of work in private. Its a form of cognitive behavioural therapy. I’m forced to face my anxieties and “irrational” thoughts in order for me to get over them. My severe obsessive compulsive disorder means i constantly am arguing with any unwanted thoughts, i have learnt how to keep them out. I do this by constantly having a loop of counteractions in my head to prevent any negative thought from manifesting itself. “This will not happen, that is not going to happen, every things all right, no, he will not die, i will not commit, healthy, happy, clean, clear, it’s ok, physio, hospital” is an example of what is running through my head every second of the day no matter what I’m doing or where i go. I’ve learnt how to talk whilst having this loop of thought running through my mind. Its been like this for years. Its become normal.
The next phase of CPT involves formal processing of the trauma. Patients are often asked to write a detailed account of their worst traumatic experience, which they read to the therapist in session. By writing the account of their worst traumatic experience, patients break the pattern of avoidance and increase the process of dissipating the strong emotions that have yet to “run the natural course of recovery.” Emotional processing continues throughout the course of CPT as patients discuss their traumatic experiences in efforts to clarify and modify their maladaptive beliefs.
Here is a 1 minute clip I found on the internet, which very briefly helps explain CBT