The first Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) blog explained that the first step is to identify the automatic thoughts that a person has towards a situation or circumstance. What is the thought behind the feeling? A log or journal may assist in finding patterns.

The second step in CBT is to challenge that thought. Is that thought true? Is it true all the time and is it true in this situation? Is that thought helpful to me right now? How is that thought impacting my feelings and how does it make me want to react? 

The final step is to change that thought into a more beneficial thought, leading to an adaptive behavior. Sometimes this may mean that even though the thought is correct, a person will change their thought to something that is more beneficial to them. For example, suppose a person believe that another person does not like them. This may or may not be true. However, people cannot control other people, so one must figure out a way to be “okay” with others not liking them. In this example, the person may decide not to consider that the person does not like them, or “put it out” of their mind. Or the person may tell themselves that the other person is missing out on what could be a really good friendship. These are all things that may or may not be true, but they all help the person to not ruminate, or think often about, the situation. 

This has been a general overview of CBT. For a more detailed involvement, including the skills that help change maladaptive thinking, seek professional help such as our counselors in Forney and Colleyville. Once a person has been taught the skills through therapy and have practiced them, they may find that it gets easier to practice and change their outcomes. 

Steffani Wooley, MA, LPC Intern

Supervisor: Sascha Webb, MA, LPC-S, RPT-S