Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, also referred to as CBT, is a form of psychotherapy. It’s a short-term technique that goes beyond laying down on a sofa and talking about traumatic childhood memories.

But can it help healthcare professionals perform better?

Instead, the therapist and the client work together and create a plan that intends to help the patient overcome a myriad of psychological difficulties. With this approach, a person can become aware of and assume responsibility for their thoughts… the way they feel and their behavior.

It’s the difference between waking up angrily to chirping birds and feeling good on a challenging day.

Read on to learn more…

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)? A Simple Explanation

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)? A Simple Explanation. Image Source: pixabay

The History of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?

Two forms of therapy were created by two doctors who came together to create CBT:

  1. Cognitive therapy was brought to us by Aaron Beck in the 1960s
  2. It was inspired by Albert Ellis who created rational emotive behavior therapy (REBT) in the 1950s

Albert Ellis also created the ABC Method which explains the process of what is perceived to be a negative event:

  • Beginning with an activating event (A)
  • That leads to our beliefs about the event (B)
  • Followed by how we typically react to the activating event (C)

What Issues Can CBT Help Remedy?

Some people are more emotional than so-called logical beings. They make assumptions, jump to conclusions and exaggerate situations.

We can all choose how to think and act on our feelings. CBT can help overcome chronic negative thinking. The process helps us find the causes of negative feelings and intrusive thoughts.

If these issues are left untreated, they can lead to depression, panic attacks, insomnia, anger and worry. For medical students and practicing doctors, this is known as physician burnout.

Other conditions that Cognitive Behavioral Therapy can help with include:

  • Panic Disorder
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Social Phobia
  • Marital Conflict
  • Eating Disorders
  • And many other psychological and physical conditions

How Can CBT Help Medical Students & Physicians Provide Quality Healthcare?

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy works by changing the way a patient views what they perceive to be a negative situation. Everyone has different “lenses and filters” that they see the world with personally.

CBT is an applied practice that involves collaborating with a therapist and assigning goals for the week. These goals are intended to empower the patient and reframe past counterproductive assumptions.

What Is the Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Process?

CBT includes a group of sessions with a therapist or a counselor in either a one-on-one or group setting.  During a session the participants will:

  • Work to identify situations beyond seeing them as only good or bad
  • Learn to become aware of involuntary thoughts that make anyone feel bad
  • Come face to face with persisting negative thoughts about the future
  • Create a personalized, goal-oriented program that improves self-esteem and provides peace of mind
  • Receive feedback from a professional
  • Participate in role-playing activities
  • Practice techniques to calm the mind and relax the body
  • Journaling experiences during the course

Participants will have homework to take home and apply in real-life situations. Strong feelings and personal memories may come up during the process.

The bottom line is: In a systematic form, old ways of thinking that do not serve us, can be rethought.

What is the Goal of CBT?

Studies have shown that changing negative perceptions can have a positive effect on health, mood and behavior. It reduces stress, helps to cope with life’s challenges and deal with grief and difficult relationships.

The goals of CBT are to rewire the mind, check the process and learn to manage thoughts that are unhealthy within the brain.

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