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South Hill Counseling and Biofeedback Clinic

Cheryl Osler, EdD, RN, CNS, AHN-BC, LMHC, CLNC        

Brandi Rilkoff, MS, NCC, LMHC, GMHS, CCTP

Maureen Elston, ARNP, PMHNP                

5915 S. Regal St. Suite 304
Ben Burr Office Building
Spokane, WA 99223

[email protected]

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy

 Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy:

Cognitive-behavioral therapists seek to learn what their clients want out of life (their goals) and then help their clients achieve those goals. The therapist's role is to listen, teach, and encourage, while the client's role is to express concerns, learn, and implement that learning.

Cognitive-behavioral therapists have a specific agenda for each session. Specific techniques/concepts are taught during each session. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) focuses on the client's goals. Cognitive-behavioral therapy is directive in the sense that therapists teach and show clients how to think and behave in ways to obtain their goals. Therefore, CBT therapists do not tell their clients what to do--rather, they teach their clients how to do.

CBT is based on the scientifically supported assumption that most emotional and behavioral reactions are learned. Therefore, the goal of therapy is to help clients unlearn their unwanted reactions and to learn a new way of reacting.

Therefore, CBT has nothing to do with "just talking". People can "just talk" with anyone.

The educational emphasis of CBT has an additional benefit--it leads to long term results. When people understand how and why they are doing well, they know what to do to continue doing well.

A central aspect of CBT is rational thinking. Rational thinking is based on fact. Often, we upset ourselves about things when, in fact, the situation isn't like we think it is. If we knew that, we would not waste our time upsetting ourselves.

Therefore, CBT encourages us to look at our thoughts as being hypotheses or guesses that can be questioned and tested. If we find that our hypotheses are incorrect (because we have new information), then we can change our thinking to be in line with how the situation really is.