Therapy Warwickshire prides its self on providing a
professional, friendly and common sense approach to CBT. That means making it
work for you and your needs, using therapy to help you to get the best from
CBT, or Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, is a talking
therapy. CBT can help you to make sense of overwhelming problems by breaking
them down into smaller parts. This makes it easier to see how they are
connected and how they affect you. It works by identifying, understanding and
changing the vicious cycles that keep difficult or unhelpful feelings going. It
provides you with the opportunity to consider what you think and do, and what it does to the
way you feel. We will explore the way your beliefs, thoughts, view of the world
and actions influence how you feel. Working together we will consider how you can
become more aware of your thinking, do something differently with your thoughts
and make changes in how you respond to these thoughts to change the way you
feel for the better.
You wake up on a Monday morning for work and think ‘I
can’t go in today’, you imagine your boss being critical towards you (these are
the cognitions), you feel stressed, exhausted and sick and quite overwhelmed.
You phone in sick pulling the cover back over your head and spending the day in
bed (behaviours). In the short term you feel relief but what the real cost of
· You spend the day beating yourself up about
· Feeling guilty for phoning in sick
· Feeling angry at your boss whom you have no
power to change and taking it out on those around you causing arguments and you
feeling even worse about yourself
· Being even more worried about the criticism
which you predict will be dished out and the consequences of not being at work
if you are able to face work on Tuesday morning
· Sleeping in the day which disturbs your sleep
the following night
· Drinking three quarters of a bottle of wine
to try and relax before the following day which results in a hangover
This is a vicious cycle. We can’t change the job role,
the working hours or the boss but we can think about how you can change and
adapt to manage the feelings this situation generates.
CBT won’t make you think positively but it often is a
side effect of therapy.
to expect from my first appointment?
Firstly a friendly face, who won’t judge you or be
surprised by the things you might share. This appointment is an opportunity for
us to really think about what has motivated you to come, why it might be a
problem and what you want to change and consider. Once we understand these
things more then we can consider how CBT can and cannot help.
I pride myself on being an honest ethical practitioner,
if I feel CBT can only address part of the problem I will tell you and allow
you to make an informed choice. Sometimes, I may feel that a different approach
with an alternative therapist might be better to address a particular part of
your problem, I see supporting you to make an informed choice to be an integral
part of my role.
My aim of the first appointment is for you to leave
feeling you have a better understanding of why you came and what is maintaining
your ‘problem’, to have a understanding of how CBT works in practice, and how
CBT can and can’t help and what would be useful for you to do next.
Appointments are generally an hour long and ideally
weekly particularly at the beginning as this helps us to get to know each other
and really understand what is maintaining the ‘problem’. That said, I do live
in the real world and recognise that money, time, work and family commitments
can all be a challenge. Ideals aren’t always realistic and an important part of
my first appointment with everyone is thinking about these practicalities.
Everyone’s needs are obviously different but you will usually
meet with a therapist for between 5 and 20 sessions, depending on the problem, your
motivation to change it and what life may throw at you whilst you are working
hard to make positive change.
You decide what you want to deal with in the short,
medium and long term.
In the first few appointments, we will think about how
CBT could help and you will check that you feel comfortable with it and me! In
these first appointments we try to understand about how your past and
background might be effecting what’s happening now, but its important to
highlight that CBT very much focuses on the ‘here and now’ but sometimes it’s
useful to glance over your shoulder and think about where you have come from.
At the beginning of each appointment we will be reviewing the
things we covered in the previous session, things you have been working on at home between appointments and agree what
would be useful to focus on in that appointment to move you towards your goal.
The appointments themselves are only half of the picture,
CBT will ask a lot of you and it really is true ‘you will get out what you put
in’ and that means ‘homework’. It’s all very well understanding something and
working through it with me during an appointment but the art to good CBT is
that you finish therapy as your own therapist. Feeling confident that you can
identify and make the changes you need when you are flying solo and that only
comes through commitment and practice.
However, its rather different to the homework you might
remember from school, this is always collaborative, and focused on giving you
the change you desire. For example, this could be recording your thoughts to
help us understand what’s happening in a particular situation, or something
practical like ‘experimenting’ by talking to stranger to test out or challenge
your fears about what might happen.