What is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?

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Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is one of the oldest schools of psychotherapy. There are two characteristics that define CBT, i.e., its model of human nature and its methodology. It has been successfully applied for a multitude of diseases. In fact, CBT therapy for addiction treatment is quite popular for its lasting results.

In essence, we consider that almost 100% of our way of being and of our personality is the result of our experiences. Although we are born with strong genetic or biological predispositions, it is learning that makes these potentialities forge or crystallize in one direction or another. For all these reasons, childhood is of great importance, but so are adolescence and adulthood. All periods of our life are important because they enable experiences and learning, and our way of being is shaped.

Sometimes, we have experiences that cause us to learn hurtful emotional reactions. For example, if a person has a traffic accident and even though he or she is not injured, he or she is very scared the next time he or she gets into a car. He or she may feel very anxious with great fear; in fact, that person has learned a driving phobia. Other times, actually, most of the time, the learning process is slower. For example, if a person is educated at home and in school, overvaluing the importance of being liked by others, teaching them that liking is a priority or that what they think of it is crucial, that person may develop pathological shyness or social phobia.

In short, quickly and concretely, or progressively over the years, our emotional problems are the result of learning. When someone suffers from depression, an anxiety disorder, a drug or alcohol addiction, or an eating problem, they are not crazy, sick, or weak; they have simply been the victim of a series of unfortunate experiences.

A Cognitive Behavioral Therapy psychologist is an expert in learning and unlearning. This therapy consists of teaching a series of scientifically proven psychological techniques and strategies for the person to face their emotional problem and manage them until they are eliminated. The CBT psychologist is a coach, and therapy is a training or relearning process where the result of bad experiences is eliminated.

From a methodological point of view, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is a scientific discipline. The effectiveness of the techniques or the veracity of the models are not based on more or less brilliant or creative writings or opinions but on experimental data, and there are hundreds of studies to prove the point.

Many addicts don’t try to quit because they are convinced that they will fail, just as they have failed in other aspects of their lives. Having experienced so many negative consequences, such as couple breaks, legal problems, job losses, etc., it’s difficult to believe that recovery is possible. There is no reason to think that you can’t do it. The failures of the past don’t prevent the triumphs of the future. The most important thing is to be fully aware of the negative consequences of addiction that being addicted no longer brings you anything good and that you truly need to stop. And CBT therapy for addiction treatment is there to help you do it successfully.

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