You may have heard or read that CBT is formulaic, that it's about 'brainwashing', or that it fails to acknowledge or consider the importance of past events when addressing difficult issues in the present. This is not the case.
It is true that with certain problems, such as panic or specific phobia, although something may well have set things off in the first place, the focus of treatment is very much on the here-and-now and retraining the brain to engage in more appropriate ways of responding to triggers. However, where problems are more complex, we will certainly explore how the past might have contributed to the present, but with a view to moving forward. So, we may well take a compassionate look at the past to provide information, understanding and a route to self-acceptance. But fundamentally, we are looking to bring about change in the present and future.
CBT is very collaborative – in other words, patients are actively involved in the design of their own treatment goals and methods. This sense of ownership of the process plays a large part achieving a successful outcome. In CBT, we do not do things to you, or reach conclusions about you which we don't share: we work with you to support change.
It might help to read the case studies to see how CBT works with actual patients.
“ I had counselling on the NHS and after 6 sessions I felt I had enjoyed the talking, but not really made progress. I was told I would have to wait 3 months for a referral to CBT, so I used my medical insurance to come and see Joy at Greenacre CBT. It was great I got recommendations of books to read, which made me realise other people felt like me, and then after we looked at my patterns of behaviour I began to test out what would happen if I did something different. It was frightening at first, as I imagined the worst, but actually nothing awful did happen and I began to get more confident and think about my life at home and at work very differently. Thank heavens I tried CBT with Joy, and I now have a recipe for life.” Female aged 35