Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) is a type of psychological talking therapy treatment that helps patients to understand the thoughts, beliefs and attitudes that influence their feelings and behaviours. Placing empahsis on the here and now, a qualified cognitive behavioural therapist can help you break down your problems into smaller, more manageable parts. Cognitive behaviour therapists will work with you to agree established goals for the therapy.
CBT is usually short-term and focuses specifically on helping to deal with a specific problem or difficulty. Cognitive Behavioural Therapy sessions are straightforward and accessible from any location via Skype.
The underlying theory behing CBT is that thought patterns are at the root of how we interpret and deal with situations and that changing how we think can affect how we feel or behave. This is based on the idea that our thoughts cause our feelings and behaviours, as opposed to external events or situations.
Cognitive behavioural therapy can help you to become more aware of your thought patterns and how these affect your emotions and behaviours. It emphasises identifying, challenging and changing negative thought patterns so that you can challenge your thoughts about situations and become more aware of how your thinking might be determining how you view the world and how you behave.
If you are looking to find a good CBT therapist it is important to make sure that they have the appropriate skills, training and experience. The British Association for Behavioural & Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP) and The British Psychological Society (BPS) are membership bodies for accredited CBT therapists in the UK. You can find a CBT therapist who is insured to practice and registered with a recognised UK membership body online here.
Under the UK government’s NICE guidelines, CBT is recognised as one of the most effective treatments for a number of mental health issues. These conditions include anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), eating disorders, anger problems, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), phobias, drug and alcohol abuse, sleep issues and relationship problems. In some cases, CBT can match the effectiveness of antidepressant medications such as Sertraline.
CBT can also be used to treat chronic health conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and arthritis. While it cannot provide a cure for these conditions, it can help individuals cope with their physical symptoms in the long-term. CBT can offer support for issues including depression, anxiety, panic attacks, stress, self-esteem, anger management, eating disorders, trauma and PTSD, phobias, addictions, obsessive compulsive disorder and other areas.
There are many therapeutic approaches that involve CBT. A few of the most common include:
The number of cognitive behavioural therapy sessions you receive from a counsellor or psychotherapist will depend on your presenting issues. Short term courses of cognitive behavioural therapy are usually recommended when an individual presents issues that are non-complex. You and your therapist can discuss how many sessions may be required during your first consultation.
A qualified, professional cognitive behaviour therapist will work with you to examine your thoughts and behaviours and improve how you feel. You will build a relationship based on trust, giving you the confidence to share your feelings and emotions with them. Your therapist should listen to all that you have to share with empathy and openness.
We ensure that all therapists on the Harley Therapy platform are UK registered, insured, and professionally trained counsellors, psychotherapists, psychologists and cognitive behaviour therapists. They will work with you to decide the pace of your treatment and how many sessions of CBT you might need.
Your cognitive behaviour therapist will assist you in breaking down overwhelming problems into smaller parts. This will help you to see how they are connected and how they are affecting you. You will meet with your cognitive behavioural therapist for a course of weekly sessions that will last approximately 50 minutes. During your first consultation, your therapist will examine how suitable CBT is for managing your issues and assess how comfortable you feel with undertaking therapy. Your therapist may ask you to keep a diary and track your emotions, patterns of thoughts, physical feelings, and actions. You will then look at this log together and work out how your thoughts, feelings, and behaviours may be connected, how they affect you, and if they are unrealistic or unhelpful.
Once you have indentified what can be changed, your therapist may recommend homework that will help you to practice and apply these changes in your everyday life. This may include questioning upsetting thoughts and countering them with more positive ones, or focusing on taking positive action when you recognise that you may be about to do something that will make you feel worse. Cognitive behavioural therapy is not an instant fix or miracle cure. However, CBT can be greatly beneficial as you can continue to use the skills you learn in future situations to prevent negative thought spirals.
At Harley Therapy, we vet our therapists to ensure that they are registered and insured to practice as a therapist in the UK. We check that they are registered members of UK professional bodies, to ensure that all of our therapists have completed the professional training necessary to work as a licensed practitioner.
Recommended cognitive behavioural therapists who are available ASAP: