Cognitive Therapy, or CBT is an approach taught and practiced by an increasing number of mental health professionals because of its emprical base, practical appeal and clinical effectiveness. A variantof CBT is Rational-Emotive Behavior Therapy or REBT. While CBT was developed by psychiatrist, Dr. Aaron Beck and REBT was developed by psychologist, Dr. Albert Ellis, both approaches place a strong emphasis of the importance of how CURRENT thoughts, attitudes and beliefs impact current feelings and behaviors. The two most popular self-help books on the subject are probably “A New Guide to Rational Living” by Ellis and Harper and “Feeling Good: the New Mood Therapy”, by David Burns.
I was fortunate to have been personally trained by Dr. Albert Ellis at the Albert Ellis Institute in New York. Over the past 30 years, I have incorporated both Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy and Cognitive Behavior Therapy into my private practice and had much success in helping many clients who have had both serious and complex problems. Once you learn this emotional problem solving approach you can use it to reduce and overcome negative emotions such as excessive fear, worry, anxiety, anger, guilt and depression. Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy and Cognitive Behavior Therapy CBT have also been effecitvely use with addictions, PTSD and a wide range of mental and emotional disorders.
Cognitive Therapy stays mostly focused on identifying and changing present negative thoughts and far less time in talking about early childhood experiences, dreams or searching for unconscious meanings. Clients are given homework to practice new ways of thinking. The therapist in cognitive therapy acts as a guide and helps the client examine what they are thinking and how it relates to their feelings. Clients learn to replace negative, distorted thoughts with more realistic and helpful thoughts.
Cognitive Therapy tends to be short term, in that a course of treatment averages between 10-20 sessions.