is CBT ?
Therapy (CBT) is the combination of two approaches that are complementary:
Cognitive: based on the principle that the way we think about or
assess the facts that happens to us determines how we feel. For
example: a pessimist tends to see everything that happens to them
through ”grey lenses”, which leads to feelings of sadness,
worry and distress. In this case, the therapist works with the patient
to find dysfunctional thought patterns that are causing discomfort
and pain and what possible alternatives there are to understanding
the situation more realistically. This approach was developed by
the American psychologist Aaron Beck.
Behavioural: it aims to identify and understand general patterns
of behaviour through the analysis of the person’s life history
and identification of behaviours that may be unproductive and /
or cause distress. Both therapist and patient work together to identify
these patterns and look for more productive and healthier behaviours.
This approach was created by the American psychologist John B. Watson
(1879-1958) and improved by BF Skinner (1904-1990).
psychotherapeutic approach is widely used in the United Kingdom,
especially in the National Health Service (NHS). This is due to
the fact that CBT tends to produce faster results than other psychotherapeutic
approaches and also because CBT is evidence-based. This means that
its efficacy is grounded on evidence taken from scientific research.
Features of CBT
• Treatment of shorter duration in comparison to other approaches;
• Clearly defined objectives;
• All aspects of treatment are explained and discussed with
• Patient and therapist work in a cooperative relationship
in which both plan strategies to address the problems;
• The patient plays an active role and is co-responsible for
• Practical techniques are taught and practised for symptoms
• Homework: discussed and agreed with the patient, it aims
to generate or intensify the process of change. Activities may be
the training of exercises taught in sessions or other activities.
The therapy process not only occurs during the sessions and in the
presence of the therapist, but also between sessions.